Ruth’s talk was structured around 7 “take-home messages” and I’ve grouped some of the passages that were thought relevant to the talk around these messages. You’ll see that we didn’t cover all the bases! If you’ve got ideas particularly about these missing areas then why not use the comments option at the bottom to suggest others.
Love matters – pray in love
34 I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another.
We are all criminals – pray in humility
23 since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God;
1 John 3 15-17 (This is an excerpt, the full chapter is relevant)
15 All who hate a brother or sister[e] are murderers, and you know that murderers do not have eternal life abiding in them. 16 We know love by this, that he laid down his life for us—and we ought to lay down our lives for one another. 17 How does God’s love abide in anyone who has the world’s goods and sees a brother or sister in need and yet refuses help?
Psalm 130 (This was used in our closing act of worship)
1 Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord.
2 Lord, hear my voice!
Let your ears be attentive
to the voice of my supplications!
3 If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities,
Lord, who could stand?
4 But there is forgiveness with you,
so that you may be revered.
5 I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
and in his word I hope;
6 my soul waits for the Lord
more than those who watch for the morning,
more than those who watch for the morning.
7 O Israel, hope in the Lord!
For with the Lord there is steadfast love,
and with him is great power to redeem.
8 It is he who will redeem Israel
from all its iniquities.
Stigma and prejudice blight success – keep praying in humility
James 2 (this is an excerpt, the full chapter is relevant)
2 My brothers and sisters,[a] do you with your acts of favouritism really believe in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ?[b] 2 For if a person with gold rings and in fine clothes comes into your assembly, and if a poor person in dirty clothes also comes in, 3 and if you take notice of the one wearing the fine clothes and say, ‘Have a seat here, please’, while to the one who is poor you say, ‘Stand there’, or, ‘Sit at my feet’,[c] 4 have you not made distinctions among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts?
John 4:1-42 Jesus meets the woman at the well
This video sketch based on the story may be particularly relevant
Most people move away from crime – pray in faith
People change together (and changed people change institutions) – pray together
1 Peter 4:8
8 Above all, maintain constant love for one another, for love covers a multitude of sins.
Desistance often involves reoffending – keep praying in faith without ceasing
Luke 6:28-31 (This was used in our closing act of worship)
28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. 29 If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also; and from anyone who takes away your coat do not withhold even your shirt. 30 Give to everyone who begs from you; and if anyone takes away your goods, do not ask for them again. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.
10 Do not fear, for I am with you,
do not be afraid, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.
De-railed desistance can re-rail – pray in wonder and praise
All quotations from New Revised Standard Version.
If you can think of any other bible passages, particularly for those take home messages where we haven’t thought of any, then please let us know using the reply function below.