When I was growing up the arrival of mail was marked by a small red flag being raised on my rural mailbox. Getting the mail was an event because our neighbours lived far away and our stack often included letters from overseas where my mom’s relatives lived.
Since the spring I have a new reason to enjoy the daily delivery of snail mail. I became an instructor for the Crossroads Bible Institute, so I receive lessons completed by inmates across Canada for me to mark. Part of my responsibilities is to write a letter of encouragement to the student. When I write these letters I answer any questions the student has posed and share my faith journey as appropriate. Some of the questions I’ve had lately are “Was God ruthless? If yes, why was he ruthless?” and “If it says in the Bible, ‘Ask and you will receive,’ why have I not received what I have asked for.” As I write these letters, I realize that my efforts can make mail delivery into an event for a man or woman with few contacts with the outside world.
Inmates are not the only ones who’d love to receive snail mail. Picking up a pen and taking the time to write could mean a great deal to a senior, shut-in, or a small child.