“When the jailer woke and saw that the prison doors were open, he drew out his sword and was about to kill himself, supposing that the prisoners had escaped. But Paul cried out with a loud voice, ‘Do not harm yourself, for we are all here.'” Acts of the Apostles 16:27,28
Nothing is more cruel than to be punished while living and doing rightly. As in the times of Paul and Silas, our selfish society can be quite brutal to those who proclaim and practice goodness when it must take a financial loss. Such an imprisonment is no badge of shame. Instead, it is a reason for rejoicing as Jesus taught us.
Maintain your faith in times of righteous depravity and persecution. Those who also suffer rightly and wrongly need to see your shining light of hope in the midst of shared darkness. Don’t take advantage of even the most miraculous means of escape from your prison. You may find yourself just as self-serving as those who put you there.
Instead, proclaim life to those who feel that all is lost. Show them the path that gives freedom even to the imprisoned. In due time, God shall release you from the bondage inflicted by the oppressors. Until then, take joy in what you suffer for the sake of Jesus Christ. Others are paying attention, some will find salvation by your faith among them.
Your Brother in Christ,
Order of Saint Simon of Cyrene