I WAS IN PRISON, AND YOU CAME UNTO ME…

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On April 17, 1998 I was taken to prison on charges of killing a man. Someone wanted to hit my father with a knife during a dispute, but I hit him first and killed him. I was arrested and sentenced to 9 years’ imprisonment.[push h=”15″]

Life in prison is very complicated and tense. On the one hand, you terribly miss your relatives, on the other hand, you have to learn “unwritten laws” of the prison at least to survive.[push h=”15″]

Gradually I began to get used to that life, even I started solve some issues. Soon I was entrusted “to watch zone”.[push h=”15”]

The majority of imprisoned people dream of happiness, when they can go for a walk with their children or go on vacation with their wives, to live in their own house, to enjoy the love and attention of parents and relatives. After all, in prison, you can see nothing but rudeness and cruelty.[push h=”15″]

Many of us willingly accept that way of life and then can not get out of it, because we do not know a way out.[push h=”15″]

On December 29, 2001 I was released on a general amnesty. But after a short time, I again found myself in prison on charges of theft and forgery of documents. This was repeated several times, it seemed to me that the prison as a curse, was haunting me everywhere. I started looking for a way out, but people around me were in the same trap and could not help me.[push h=”15″]

Gradually, thanks to the prayers, sermons, conversations with my mother, my brother and his wife and, of course, the great mercy of the Lord, I began to read Scripture and pray. I realized there was a way out and I should walk that way, but I needed a power to do so. I was always tormented by questions: “How to leave my friends?”, “What will they think of me?” These thoughts did not give me rest.[push h=”15″]

I felt I loved God, but at the same time I did not stop sinning, and the result was that I again was found in prison on charges of theft. There I met a man who was formerly a drug addict, a criminal, but later repented. Talking with him, I felt like my faith grew stronger, even I began to preach God’s word to neighbors in the chamber, though I did not know the Word so well.[push h=”15″]

After the release from prison, I was invited to a church service. There, I repented and asked God to give me the strength to follow His way.[push h=”15″]

Jesus Christ supernaturally changed my life. He did something  in my life that no one did and could not do. Now I am free and I can give people love and kindness, knowing that by doing so, I fulfill the will of the Lord and His commandments. God gave me everything I was looking for in the world, and could not find.[push h=”15″]

Now, when I have the opportunity to visit prisons together with ministers of the church and to meet old friends, I witness them about the works of God. In the eyes of many I notice the same hopelessness and confusion that once haunted me. And so I dream and pray that each of them would repent and taste God’s goodness.[push h=”15″]

Arthur Sedrakyan, Yerevan