Beyond the Clouds: Discovering God’s Everlasting Goodness

The changing of the weather is often used as a metaphor for life’s changing circumstances. 

The weather, as we all know, can alter very quickly. Recently, I experienced four seasons in a single day while fishing.    

It was remarkable how the external environment around me went from sunny to bitterly cold to wet and windy, and how rapidly the transitions occurred at ground level. 

Most of us have experienced this when we take off in an aeroplane in foul conditions, only to find that five minutes later, we’re having to pull the window blinds down as we emerge into bright sunlight.   

No matter the weather, the sun still continues to shine, despite what it might look like at ground level. Even more surprising is that out in deeper space, the stars are there, shining in their own beauty, but simply out-performed by the sun’s brightness.  

It takes a special kind of person to remember in the cloud and rain that, somewhere up above the impenetrable gloom, a hot glowing ball of hydrogen and helium at the center of our solar system burns at 5600 degrees Celsius with a fire that never ever goes out. 

This brings me to one of my favourite Psalms which tells me not to forget that God is good all the time. That all the time, God is good because it is His nature.  

It is the equivalent of remembering that above, the weather, all is well and warm.  

From time to time, I’m tempted to forget this truth. In fact, I believe it is a tactic of the enemy and his dark forces to steal, kill and destroy my appreciation of this truth, so important, is it to my heart, soul, strength and mind. 

So today, no matter what comes my way, I choose to recall the goodness of God and praise Him and all He promises for me (and you).  

Join me right now in this collective reminder, and let it guard our hearts and restore us.


“Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name. Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me. He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. He redeems me from death and crowns me with love and tender mercies. He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle’s! The Lord gives righteousness and justice to all who are treated unfairly. He revealed his character to Moses and his deeds to the people of Israel. The Lord is compassionate and merciful, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He will not constantly accuse us, nor remain angry forever. He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve. For his unfailing love toward those who fear him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth. He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west. The Lord is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who fear him. For he knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust. Our days on earth are like grass; like wildflowers, we bloom and die. The wind blows, and we are gone— as though we had never been here. But the love of the Lord remains forever with those who fear him. His salvation extends to the children’s children of those who are faithful to his covenant, of those who obey his commandments! The Lord has made the heavens his throne; from there he rules over everything. Praise the Lord, you angels, you mighty ones who carry out his plans, listening for each of his commands. Yes, praise the Lord, you armies of angels who serve him and do his will! Praise the Lord, everything he has created, everything in all his kingdom. Let all that I am praise the Lord.” Psalms 103:1-22 NLT

From Sunset to Wildfire: Trusting God Amidst the Chaos

I watched a blazing sun set over the sea on Sunday evening. An orange orb bathed in a creamy pink matrix over a foundation of blue. It was a picture of beauty, calmness and serenity.

But within 100 miles from where I sat, three islands were literally ablaze with wildfire. Holidaymakers were being evacuated, firefighters were risking their lives and farmers were watching their livelihoods go up in flames as the environment was being engulfed and consumed.

The island I was presently relaxing on, appreciating the serene setting sun, had experienced the same chaos a week before. I had seen the destructive results and the smouldering aftermath with my own eyes.

The Christian life does not make us immune to hardship, challenges or adversity. In fact, it promises it. What God, through his living and written Word, does is encourage us to see beyond the immediate and to trust in His everlasting love and goodness.

When we follow Christ and take the words of the Bible seriously, we must recognize that each night, one of two things might occur before the sun rises again – either the Lord will return, or the sun will resume its appointed course and bring a new day. We recognize that whichever of the two options occurs, His word and His faithfulness are assured and we need not fear:

“Light, space, zest— that’s God! So, with him on my side I’m fearless, afraid of no one and nothing. When vandal hordes ride down ready to eat me alive, Those bullies and toughs fall flat on their faces. When besieged, I’m calm as a baby. When all hell breaks loose, I’m collected and cool. I’m asking God for one thing, only one thing: To live with him in his house my whole life long. I’ll contemplate his beauty; I’ll study at his feet. That’s the only quiet, secure place in a noisy world, The perfect getaway, far from the buzz of traffic. God holds me head and shoulders above all who try to pull me down. I’m headed for his place to offer anthems that will raise the roof! Already I’m singing God-songs; I’m making music to God.” – Psalms 27:1-6 MSG

As it was in the beginning is now and shall be forever. That night yielded to dawn, and we had another day.

This week may hold challenges for you or a family member, and if not this week, maybe next. There is no sugar coating this reality of human life. My wife Andrea reminded me as we prayed in the sunset, that the truth of the Psalm below penned almost 3,000 years ago will apply, no matter what.

Whatever occurs, He is God and His love is everlasting.

Selah (meaning pause and think calmly on this)

“I will exalt You, my God, O King, And [with gratitude and submissive wonder] I will bless Your name forever and ever. Every day I will bless You and lovingly praise You; Yes, [with awe-inspired reverence] I will praise Your name forever and ever. Great is the Lord, and highly to be praised, And His greatness is [so vast and profound as to be] unsearchable [incomprehensible to man]. One generation shall praise Your works to another, And shall declare Your mighty and remarkable acts. On the glorious splendor of Your majesty And on Your wonderful works, I will meditate. People will speak of the power of Your awesome acts, And [with gratitude and submissive wonder] I will tell of Your greatness. They will overflow [like a fountain] when they speak of Your great and abundant goodness And will sing joyfully of Your righteousness. The Lord is gracious and full of compassion, Slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness. The Lord is good to all, And His tender mercies are over all His works [the entirety of things created]. All Your works shall give thanks to You and praise You, O Lord, And Your godly ones will bless You. They shall speak of the glory of Your kingdom And talk of Your power, To make known to the sons of men Your mighty acts And the glorious majesty of Your kingdom. Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, And Your dominion endures throughout all generations. The Lord upholds all those [of His own] who fall And raises up all those who are bowed down. The eyes of all look to You [in hopeful expectation], And You give them their food in due time. You open Your hand And satisfy the desire of every living thing. The Lord is [unwaveringly] righteous in all His ways And gracious and kind in all His works. The Lord is near to all who call on Him, To all who call on Him in truth (without guile). He will fulfill the desire of those who fear and worship Him [with awe-inspired reverence and obedience]; He also will hear their cry and will save them. The Lord keeps all who love Him, But all the wicked He will destroy. My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord, And all flesh will bless and gratefully praise His holy name forever and ever.” – Psalms 145:1-21 AMP


I Arise Today: Courage and Conviction

Like many families with children who are digital natives, we have a family WhatsApp group. It’s used for all sorts of wonderful things, especially now our clan is expanding with grandchildren.

One of these uses is when I embark on a travel trip (which, to be fair, does seem like every Monday): I can let my nearest and dearest know that I love them. This is not a morbid thing. It is a desire as I set out into the unknown that they know that the last thing that their father would say to kith and kin are words of love.

Interestingly, when I’m travelling back home, I don’t do this and there’s probably a reason: coming back to domestic, unconditional love, security and shalom (which is home at its best surely) doesn’t seem like a journey of peril at all. It seems the most natural thing in the world. Even though, in reality, the journey home could be filled with just as much danger.

My inconsistency sometimes astounds me 😊

Anyhow to return to my main point, setting out on a journey has always carried with it significance for the faithful. God pursuers for thousands of years, starting with the Jewish community in the desert lands of Egypt, have vigilantly ‘armed’ themselves with love and obedient commitment as they step out of the doors of their homes.

“Listen, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”- Deuteronomy 6:4-9 NLT

The application is as all-embracing as it is simple:

Everything we do (tie them to your hands) and everything that goes on in our minds (forehead) and all our comings and goings are meant to be governed by our relationship with Him.

The result of this is not a check box, clipboard compliance exercise, but fully for our good:

“And the Lord our God commanded us to obey all these decrees and to fear him so he can continue to bless us and preserve our lives, as he has done to this day.” – Deuteronomy 6:24 NLT

Now, I know we live under a new agreement because of Christ Jesus so shout it from the rooftops: God is for us. God loves us unconditionally. All former barriers have been removed in Christ.

But it continues to be good to live in the fear of God, including an understanding that I simply don’t know what is going to come my way on any given day.

The New Testament is full of this paradox as worked out in the saints, and sometimes martyrs, of the early church until the modern day.

It turns out that a famous Irish saint felt the same way too. Saint Patrick has become famous for his breastplate Lorica prayers. No stranger to setting out from home to face perils and dangers of all kinds himself, he discovered a daily discipline of positioning himself faith-fully, come what may.

So, as I write this flying over Repulse Bay, Canada at 40,000 feet, 2000 kilometers from my destination, I choose to do the same. Less ably and effectively that my Celtic brother, no doubt, but believing that I am animated by the same “mighty strength” that He wrote about and knew, and that even more amazingly gloriously knew and loved him.

I pray, this day, you will step outside your door in the same courage and conviction:

“I arise today

Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,

Through a belief in the Threeness,

Through confession of the Oneness

Of the Creator of creation.


I arise today

Through the strength of Christ’s birth and His baptism,

Through the strength of His crucifixion and His burial,

Through the strength of His resurrection and His ascension,

Through the strength of His descent for the judgment of doom.


I arise today

Through the strength of the love of cherubim,

In obedience of angels,

In service of archangels,

In the hope of resurrection to meet with reward,

In the prayers of patriarchs,

In preachings of the apostles,

In faiths of confessors,

In innocence of virgins,

In deeds of righteous men.


I arise today

Through the strength of heaven;

Light of the sun,

Splendor of fire,

Speed of lightning,

Swiftness of the wind,

Depth of the sea,

Stability of the earth,

Firmness of the rock.


I arise today

Through God’s strength to pilot me;

God’s might to uphold me,

God’s wisdom to guide me,

God’s eye to look before me,

God’s ear to hear me,

God’s word to speak for me,

God’s hand to guard me,

God’s way to lie before me,

God’s shield to protect me,

God’s hosts to save me

From snares of the devil,

From temptations of vices,

From every one who desires me ill,

Afar and anear,

Alone or in a multitude.


I summon today all these powers between me and evil,

Against every cruel merciless power that opposes my body and soul,

Against incantations of false prophets,

Against black laws of pagandom,

Against false laws of heretics,

Against craft of idolatry,

Against spells of women and smiths and wizards,

Against every knowledge that corrupts man’s body and soul.

Christ shield me today

Against poison, against burning,

Against drowning, against wounding,

So that reward may come to me in abundance.


Christ with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me,

Christ in me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me,

Christ on my right, Christ on my left,

Christ when I lie down, Christ when I sit down,

Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me,

Christ in the mouth of every man who speaks of me,

Christ in the eye that sees me,

Christ in the ear that hears me.


I arise today

Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,

Through a belief in the Threeness,

Through a confession of the Oneness

Of the Creator of creation.”

– Saint Patrick (ca. 377)



Saint Patrick (window) © Sicarr, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Prayer, Perseverance and Purpose: Learnings from PF Ukraine’s Prayer Breakfast

I have recently returned from a wonderful visit to Ukraine. The invitation came because PF Ukraine, in the face of real adversity, has shown itself to be a partner of great value to the justice ministry there. As a result, PFU Executive Director Vyacheslav Kogut and his team were co-sponsors of a prayer breakfast comprised of prison governors, military personnel, faith leaders, and many others besides.  

All persons attending gathered around the person of Jesus and were committed to prayer in the midst of their current circumstances. I had the privilege of reminding them that the greatest power in our universe is God’s love for those he has created.  

The indefatigable spirit of the PFU leaders, supporters and volunteers was inspiring and challenging in equal measure. Their commitment to service and impact was undefeated by external circumstances which they were not in control of. The things they offered in response were hard work, perseverance and a hope for the future. Their work is astounding.  

Many of the national ministries in our PFI family face challenges, yet our teams around the world continue to give of their best. We continue to see God surprise us and, in every way, move through the work we are doing, as we serve the prisoners of our world, doing justice, loving mercy and walking humbly with our God who is a Father to us all. 

We are inspired and empowered by the greatest power that our world can encounter: the unconditional love of our creator, a God who affirms to every human being that they are His image bearers, who revealed Himself, 2,000 years ago, in the person of Jesus of Nazareth. 

The lengths he went to prove His love and commitment to us were extraordinary. He faced an unjust, cruel death alongside two known criminals, one of whom He assured with His dying breath, would be with Him in paradise that very day. He then descended into Hell, the place of death and imprisonment, and spectacularly emerged in victory. 

Prisons and tombs are everywhere around us and within us: physical, psychological, emotional, spiritual. They are all places of death. But no matter how far we fall from displaying His image (living in tombs and prisons, either of our own making or not), God makes it clear that we are loved unconditionally and that His offer to all is freedom and resurrection life. 

Psalm 68:6 tells us that “He leads out the prisoner to prosperity,” maybe better puts as “He leads out the prisoner to fullness of every kind”. It is the kind of work that God is expert in. In my work, I am privileged to see His transformation in lives all over the world. From prison to freedom, fullness and wholeness.   

The Ukrainian people represent something that is deep within those that God has created. Galatians 5:1 says, “It was for freedom that Christ has set us free.” You could say it is in the DNA of all of us, that a God who is love, desires for us to be free and is in charge of our universe is worth remembering when circumstances arise against us in this life.  

I do not believe history and eternity will be on the side of those who seek to usurp the kingdom He launched on resurrection Sunday, 2,000 years ago. Our world changed on that resurrection day, for good. Nothing is the same from now on. At the name of Jesus every knee must bow. 

We have the privilege in this life and today of embracing this God of love and author of life, while praying and embodying, “Your kingdom come and your will be done be done on earth as in heaven.” Our scripture tells us He listens and moves in response. 

In the dark physical prisons of the world, the institutional prisons of injustice and oppression, and in the fearful dark prisons of my heart, Jesus Christ is present and brings His Words of life 

I was reminded of this fact in the chapel inside Boroslav prison with its large iconic artwork of Christ Pantokrator. There he was, His right hand raised in blessing, His left holding the Good News of who He is, why he came and what that means for us. 

This is why I believe our work is holy. We remind those in the prison of the world, and simultaneously ourselves, of these truths in practice and words. That we are image- bearing, affirmed, forgiven; That we can be and are continuously being restored and transformed by Him. 

It is why I am fond of saying, “We don’t take Jesus into prison. We follow Him in and meet Him there. 

And lastly, from my heart I say and to the all-powerful God whose name is Jesus: May the Lord bless you and protect you. May He make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you. May He lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace. 

Revitalizing Families, Restoring Hope

It is beyond dispute that, in the Bible, the family has been one of God’s key institutional designs for blessing our world. Right back to the garden of Eden, where human beings are encouraged to multiply and fill the earth, it has been families that have achieved this God-given goal. God is the author, giver and sustainer of life. Period. And families are His design.

By describing the family as an institution, my meaning is something structurally beneficial to society endowed by someone or something. I passionately believe this is what families can, often are and should be. Who would deny that, at their best, families are places of love, security, provision, and mutual flourishing and benefit? It is true that, because we are all broken and in need of healing in our lives, no family is perfect. Countless popular books have been written with on variations on the theme of “my family history and how I survived it.”

Yet, many quality academic studies affirm that a strong, cohesive family is still the most robust and best communal building block we have. Those of us who are privileged to have been brought up in a positive, healthy environment like this should be perpetually grateful to God, our parents and even our siblings.

Sadly, our world is also full of family break up and disruption, especially in the prisons of our world. Go into almost any prison and talk to men (more than 90% of those in prison are men) and you encounter the same story again and again. Absent fathers producing absent fathers is like a mathematical equation with the same result each time, as the playground to prison pathway is trodden again and again with all its relational vandalism and violence. A crying shame and a seemingly endless cycle of curse and criminality.

But when fighting off darkness, it is better to light a candle than to simply curse the lack of light. It is in this spirit that I commend this edition of Touchstone to you. Things can be done to change this state of affairs. This issue is rich with meaningful interventions that can help break this cycle.

The work being done throughout the world in our national ministries for the children and families of prisoners is so beautiful and varied. There are so many stunning examples of healing and restoration for the orphans and widow of incarceration.

PFI’s signature programs, both behind bars and with families, also add to the mix and result in blessing to individuals, families and then on into community as dark ripple effects are disrupted by light.

We can be the Grace of God, Kingdom ambassadors and agents of transformation. I know I’m writing to brothers and sisters who give themselves, often selflessly, to this work. Work that is often hard and challenging. But this work, this investment in nurturing and strengthening the bonds between family members that have been strained and torn by incarceration, is an investment in one of God’s primary ways of blessing the world.

But let’s be assured our work is always worth it:

“We live in such a way that no one will stumble because of us, and no one will find fault with our ministry. In everything we do, we show that we are true ministers of God. We patiently endure troubles and hardships and calamities of every kind. We prove ourselves by our purity, our understanding, our patience, our kindness, by the Holy Spirit within us, and by our sincere love. We faithfully preach the truth. God’s power is working in us. We use the weapons of righteousness in the right hand for attack and the left hand for defense.” 2 Corinthians 6:3-4, 6-7 NLT

May God richly bless you and continue to empower you through His love.

Lines, Circles and Spirals: Growing and Returning to Forever Truths

Last year, my wife Andrea and I were given a gift of a page from an original King James Version Bible containing my favorite verse — Colossians 1:10. It’s an appeal to “walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God.” This verse has been a wonderful orientation in my life — deeply helpful as I have sought for meaning and purpose, as well as providing an internal gyroscope for the good and the noble.

I am particularly drawn to the final encouragement to grow in the knowledge of God because it implies flourishing and expansion in a linear direction. The natural world is full of examples of growth of this kind. Upwards, outwards and inwards. This is most spectacularly revealed to us at this time of year in the northern hemisphere, when flowers, trees and shrubs of all kinds begin to bud and flower.

I think it’s safe to say that linear growth (in three dimensions) is one of the most commonly observed phenomena in our world.

However, I’m acutely aware that my life also has cyclical elements to it, which are deeply helpful as I grow. One example of a cyclical element is the celebration of key events, birthdays, anniversaries and commemorative events like feasts. Reminders of vital events that have occurred in the past, but which are worth remembering for the future.

In the life of a believer in Jesus Christ, one of the most important of these is Easter, which returns each year full of the deepest meaning, significance and hope for our lives now and in the forever future.

At first sight, a line and a circle are clearly different. Yet, there is a three-dimensional form which combines a line and a circle, which is a spiral coil.

It seems to me that in the Christian life, this is a helpful visual illustration. God commends to us linear growth (in the knowledge of who He is and in being conformed to the image of His Son) and also a regular return to fundamental and forever truths (“Do this in remembrance of me”) that comprise our faith.

This spiral coil helps us to visualise how we can both grow and yet return to these events with ever-increasing wonder and appreciation.

So, may God richly bless you this Easter and may you return to the event that changed our world forever 2,000 years ago with a new awesome wonder. To appreciate again how the sacrifice of love that His death and resurrection demonstrated has changed our lives forever, and to embrace the flourishing that God has designed for His children who understand the power of this good news to heal, reconcile and transform.

A message which we have received first ourselves and are privileged to share with those who are in prison, their families and victims.


Andy Corley

Finding Meaning in the Storm

Of late, I have increasingly enjoyed contemplating iconic art. Like the written word, art can accomplish the creation of new thoughts that are helpful in the development of realizing what it means to be more fully human. 

For instance, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, in his classic book The Gulag Archipelago, said “Bless you prison, bless you for being in my life. For there, lying upon the rotting prison straw, I came to realize that the object of life is not prosperity as we are made to believe, but the maturity of the human soul.”

Recently, I have spoken on multiple occasions about the icon pictured above, which represents Christ and the disciples on the Sea of Galilee. 

The events shown are recounted to us in Luke’s account of the crossing of the Sea of Galilee, when the storm and the waves embattled the boat that Jesus and the disciples were in. This particular depiction of the story linked two events that I had not previously connected in my mind. The first was the statement of Jesus that they were going to the other side of the lake, and the second was the freeing of the demon possessed, broken man in chains (a metaphor for those in prison if ever there was one) being the very reason for the journey in the first place. 

The purpose of the journey appears to have been to intervene in this man’s life, to bring healing, restoration and freedom to him. The storm can be viewed as a conspiring of external circumstances, causing a very real challenge to this activity. And yet, the creator of the universe, our Savior, was and is steadfastly committed to His liberation activity.  

I was also struck by the way that, from time to time, I can insert myself into several of the characters in the picture. At times, I am the fearful disciple in the boat, questioning whether God cares. At times, I am Peter, stepping out on the water in faith, temporarily successful and then sinking. At times, I am the prisoner who needs rescuing. And at times, in Christ, I am privileged to be the one who can minister redemptive activity. Sometimes a picture really is worth 1,000 words. 

Whichever character you identify with right now, it is a stunning fact that God dwells within us by his Holy Spirit and in Him, we live and breathe, and have our being. 

Regardless of our circumstances, it does not get much better than that. I pray as you read this Touchstone article, that the God of all hope would fill you hearts and minds with a revelation of who He is and how much He has done for us and is for us in life. Enjoy the ride amongst the waves, with the picture in your mind’s eye. 

Your brother,


God’s Gift of Hope

I was a late addition and very grateful that I was invited to the party. The purpose: a clay pigeon shoot. The venue: a stately home. The host: a member of one England’s great historic families. And best of all, my fellow guests were the most eclectic group of men you could hope to meet.

The existing friendships were genuine and deep, formed in life’s trenches of challenging circumstance. Newcomers like myself were made welcome, making the possibility of new friendship highly likely. No surprises therefore that conversations were rich, real, informed and varied.

As different individuals spoke about where life’s journey had taken them and what they were now doing, the honesty and reality led to our conversation occasionally becoming dark, and at times hope-less.

Not the hopelessness of apathy or frivolity or shallowness. Rather, the hopelessness formed by personal experience of life’s complexities meeting faith — where an easier path of simply following biblical rules and statutes would be desirable but not available, where wisdom and courage were both required as a response to a need.

At several points, I found myself thanking God for some of the men present, especially those who had made real sacrifices at great personal risk to serve others.

I retired to bed at 1:30 in the morning on the first night and laid awake for another hour as I chewed on the conversation and the Stilton cheese — it was that stimulating and challenging.

It caused me to reflect on the role that hope plays in my life and how much of my worldview, heart and mind posture and resulting action is framed by the gift of hope.

I cannot imagine a world without hope.

That gift of hope originates in God from whom every good gift derives.

Hope, as revealed in the Scriptures, is based in the character of our God, who, with all authority and power in His universe, is working out His good plans and purposes.

In this sense, hope is directional in that it will culminate in time, and — because of its origin — is guaranteed. Origin determines destiny, especially given the appearance of Jesus of Nazareth (God in flesh) and the work He undertook during His life, death, resurrection and ascension.

The good news for us is that His ongoing work, now at the right hand of the Father, is bringing this plan into reality. The astounding news is that He chooses to involve us in this work too.

This revelation was the stuff of missional communication and drive for the disciples, the early church and for all true believers since. There is a new King in town, forever.

It validates us, our human-ness and our work. Our co-operation with the King really matters on every level.

This reality — the fact that God in the person of Jesus is in charge — has been captured in art form of all types, but especially in the icon of Christ Pantokrator. He loves us. He forgives us completely. He is with us, for us and by His spirit lives in us, forever.

“Jesus Christ, detail from Deesis mosaic, Hagia Sophia, Istanbul” by Edal Anton Lefterov licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

Our world and the mission field we have been specifically called to is facing tremendous upheavals of all sorts. There is fear and uncertainty on every level. Few of us will be immune to the impacts in our personal lives, families and communities. And yet, there He is: King of the universe, hand raised in blessing, in fulfillment of the hope of the ages.

No thing, no circumstance and no one can alter that or defeat Him in what He has done. His accomplishment is no less than a new creation.

Our privilege is to proclaim and practice this good news, especially in the dark places of prisons, where hope can be in short supply.

In 2023, I intend and pray that I might be an ambassador of hope, wherever I can, including this first 2023 Touchstone introduction.

May the bolded encouragement be a best practice transfer for all of us.

“I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in Him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit. I am fully convinced, my dear brothers and sisters, that you are full of goodness. You know these things so well you can teach each other all about them. Even so, I have been bold enough to write about some of these points, knowing that all you need is this reminder.” Romans 15:13-15, NLT