While I’m on a blog break, please enjoy this post, originally published in June of 2008 (my friend continues to be used of God in her circumstance in amazing ways…she will be out in June of 2010).

Today, my brain is saturated and my heart overflowing. Why, you ask? Well, I went on a roadtrip this weekend with a good friend of mine, to visit our mutual friend that is serving out her sentence at a state women’s prison. If you frequent this blog, you’ve heard about her; if not, here, here, and here are some posts that will bring you up to speed.

You might think that visiting someone in this environment would be depressing or a little scary. In many cases, you’d be right. However, we sat across a table from our friend for the entire six hour visit, listening to story after story literally pour out of her regarding God’s goodness, His Holy presence, His supernatural touch in every aspect of her life. To say it was amazing, or that we sat in rapt awe, would be a gross understatement.
One thing that I kept noticing as she spoke, was the fact that she would set up every story by giving up the minute, yet vital, details, building and building, then she would segue to the climax of the story with this phrase:
But – wouldn’t you know – God…

Every time she said it, I thought of another post that I just read of a blog friend, Holly’s. She talked about how Noah was the exception to the rule, in a world that had sunk to the depths in sin. “But Noah” walked blamelessly…”But Noah” walked righteously with God…(Genesis 6:5-7) People thought Noah was nuts, but he stood firm in his obedience to God and was saved from destruction in a sinful world.
In our conversation yesterday, I realized that our friend is a lot like Noah. She is surrounded by souls in deep bondage to a million different vices and strongholds. Spiritual warfare is taking place all around her and she’s on the front lines. She is mocked and ridiculed for her beliefs and her obedience to God. But – wouldn’t you know – God is honoring her obedience with miraculous protection, intervention, wisdom, direction, and softening of the hardest hearts. While Noah was an exception to the rule of his society, and certainly, our friend is an exception to the rule of hers, it’s God who provided the ultimate exception:
But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ, and raised us up with Him, and made us sit with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus…” Ephesians 2:4-6

The fact of the matter is that, even if we try our darndest to walk righteously, we’re still going to mess up. Noah wasn’t perfect, and neither is my friend; she is in prison, after all, and there, but for the grace of God, go any of us. We’re all a mess in one way or another. “The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23), but God made an exception to that rule. We deserve death, but – wouldn’t you know – God LOVES us…He provided a way out. If we accept that gift, and keep trying to walk in His path, God will show His faithfulness in the same amazing ways He did to Noah and to my friend. What applied in the ark, applies in the prison, and applies to whatever warfare you are faced with today.
It was absolutely amazing to watch my friend in her state-issued blue scrubs, glowing with the fire of Christ. To hear her say that the journey she is taking with God, and the depths to which He is revealing Himself to her, is worth the sacrifice of being away from her family, is, well, something I can scarcely get my brain around. Her joy in her deplorable circumstance is incomprehensible. But – wouldn’t you know – God, and ONLY God makes it possible.