Have you ever thought about the power of a label? Those closest to me know that I stiffen at being introduced as “my minister’s wife.” Am I not your friend? Your sister in Christ? Your co-worker? Am I only that label?
But, of course, many labels are much worse. “A black boy,” “that autistic girl,” “a fat woman,” “that retarded man.” We surely recoil at such as these.
But the powerful label I’m thinking of today is a piece of paper that sticks to a package–a mailing label.
My friend Mac often writes a prisoner, Vaughn, who is doing a great work for Christ in an Indiana prison. It’s difficult to understand how such a man of God can be condemned to such a place, but he is using his time there to teach the lost about Jesus. Talk about a captive audience! But the men still have to choose whether or not to listen to his teaching.
Mac learned long ago that the prison would not let Vaughn receive books sent from a residence–only from a bookstore or such official place. Yet he had many books already in his possession that Vaughn would like to have.
So we decided to experiment a bit. I gave Mac some of our Steve Boyd Presentations labels that I use when we mail out book orders. Vaughn received the books!
Now he has mailed over 40 books to Vaughn, who reads them and then passes them on to other prisoners. Because of that powerful little piece of paper, the lost are reading and learning about a Savior–the one who can truly free them. I am excited to be a small part of that ministry!
“I, the Lord, have called you in righteousness;
I will take hold of your hand.
I will keep you and will make you
to be a covenant for the people
and a light for the Gentiles,
7 to open eyes that are blind,
to free captives from prison
and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness. Isaiah 42:6-7
Through a powerful little label, men are being called to righteousness and are responding to the gospel. Praise be to God who gives the victory!