Gosh, that’s a lot so to summarize:
Settle down and be happy because it’s okay to do so; build houses of faith; plant seeds of faith and live life “faithful in all (God’s) my house.” In these, and from these, the exiles – and we inmates – will find freedom within and after captivity and peace and happiness within captivity.
Some may ask, “Does this mean I have to become a zealot proclaiming God’s word on the compound?”
Faith comes in many forms: a smile, a bit of food for the indigent inmate, a sincere ‘please’ and ‘thank you,’ an ear for the broken, returning love for hate, holding a door open – infinite ways but unless we sow these seeds we cannot eat the crop. Imagine when that ‘hater’ says, “Excuse me,” when he bumps into you all because you’ve said it to him even when you weren’t at fault for the contact. And the reward? Eternal freedom in God’s house and if we continue to live in our house of faith after incarceration, physical freedom too and all the while planting seeds to keep God’s word eternal.
Suddenly being an exile – inmate – in captivity becomes bearable and in an odd way, a worthy effort for God and ourselves universally.