Freedom in Prison

(The Forge Newsletter_05_2020)

2020.05.paulsilas“About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them, and suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken. And immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone's bonds were unfastened.” (Acts 16:25-26)

The apostle Paul and Silas were put into prison in Philippi, after being beaten severely, because they cast out a spirit of divination from a slave girl who told fortunes. However, they prayed for the people who accused them, instead of complaining, and praised the Lord, instead of groaning with pain. Then, suddenly, there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken and immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone's bonds were unfastened, but no-one escaped.

1. Prisoners try to escape instinctively
Prison confines people and strips them of freedom, so prisoners often try to dig tunnels or to give bribes in order to escape from the prisons. However, in the story above no prisoners escaped, although all the prison doors were opened and everyone was unchained. Were they all frozen because of the terrifying incident? Or was there such a deep peace and freedom in them, they didn’t react to external incidents? If there is no peace and freedom in them, they always try to escape because of fear and anxiety.

2. Prison can change our role and status
Paul and Silas were whipped badly, chained and put in prison, but they prayed and praised God and brought the presence of God into the prison. Also they demonstrated the power and freedom of God to all the prisoners. Even the jailer and his family were brought into the Kingdom of God. Paul and Silas released him from the spiritual prison of unbelief.

3. Prison can release us into freedom
Truly we lose freedom when we are imprisoned, but we gain freedom too when we are imprisoned. Joseph lived painfully because Potiphar’s wife lured him continuously. One day she grabbed him to make him sleep with her but he managed to flee from her. In the end he was arrested and imprisoned innocently. However, he had freedom from her after he was imprisoned and
his life was transformed and transferred through the prison life. Likewise prison forces confinement on us and takes away what we have, but brings amazing freedom and transformation of life.


[ COVID-19 Has Created an invisible Prison ]

1. The globe has been locked down by COVID-19
2020.05.5gcageNearly the whole world has been bound and groaning because of the COVID-19 virus. Already so many people have passed away and been lying in sick-beds. Governments continue to advise social distancing and some people are being treated in hospitals, but there is no obvious medication or vaccine although scientists, doctors and governors have been working hard to find one. Also this virus could mutate, which means it will be in vain although a vaccine may come out.

We have inner freedom and songs of God although we are in a lockdown situation. So if we pray for the people and praise the Lord in this prison-like situation, God might release his earthquake to shake the foundation of this society. God might not want us to try to escape from this situation but he wants us to release other prisoners and the jailer and his family instead of trying to escape from the prison.

It is great, if I can escape safely from the prison. But how wonderful if the foundation of the prison is shaken, all the prisoners’ chains are unbound and all the prison doors are opened! Moreover, if all the prisoners’ hearts are opened and receive the One whom Paul and Silas praised, it is amazing!

Paul and Silas were imprisoned because they cast out the evil spirit from a woman. But God used this incident, saved the jailer and his family and all the prisoners had an encounter with the presence of God. Even though COVID-19 has stopped us and bound us in many areas, like prison life, I believe that we, as family, church, society and nation should pray and praise the Lord Jesus like Paul and Silas. We have been bound and lost life, freedom, finances, opportunity, etc., also we may lose more. However, we should recognise how weak we are and seek the Almighty in this prison, and restore our faith in God and our love towards neighbours.

2. Not just opening the prison door but being shaken the foundation of ourselves
It is good if the prison doors are opened, but the foundation of the prison should be shaken. We have to stop our restless and busy lifestyle in order to entrust all of ourselves to Jesus who breaks us and humbles us and renews us.
We have less freedom in the prison but we can go deeper in relationship with him. Although we might be freer outside the prison, we would rather be the prisoner of Jesus because there is real joy and everlasting life when we take the cross.

3. We may be killed in prison, or can transform people fundamentally
We may be killed in prison, like John the Baptist or the apostle James. Or we can be transformed and transferred like Joseph, or bring a jailer and prisoners into the Kingdom of God like Paul and Silas. This prison experience is like the Israelites who were in the wilderness. God intended to train and prepare them in the wilderness in order to bring them into the promised land. But almost everyone died in the place of miracle, and they died grumbling and complaining to God.


[ COVID-19 Creates New Lifestyle ]

2020.05.5gdistance1. Social Distance & Private Closeness
Even though I am living with social distancing, we are meeting people more often with telephone and internet, etc.. Likewise making social distance, can mean creating closeness in different ways. If we don’t make social distance, we may not build private closeness.

Since TV invaded our lives in the last century, our family social interaction has been changed. Also broadband internet and smart phones have changed our lifestyle radically. Now we hardly see and talk to each other face to face. Our family fellowship has been nearly disappearing.

At the moment the British Government is strongly advising us to keep social distancing of 2 metres. COVID-19 is confining us in the house and even on the street we have to keep a distance. We are either spending more time with our families at home, or spending even more time on the internet. In this lockdown situation, what should I actually be making distance from, and what should I be bringing closer?

2. 5G is the cause of the COVID-19 epidemic?

2020.05.covid5gSince the outbreak of this COVID-19, some people have been claiming that the 5G network is to blame. There may be a connection but the problem is not only 5G, it is also 4G and 3G etc.. Since the arrival of the smartphone, we have the possibility to take photos, make videos and phone calls and access high-speed internet all on one device! We can access all of this anywhere: at home, outside, at work, travelling, walking, driving – actually it is driving us into a lifestyle of restlessness. It seems convenient to have constant communication and internet access, but in reality we have lost our space to think and be, because everything is filled with ceaseless online activity.

2020.05.5gWhen locomotive engines were being developed, many people were opposed because it was believed that travelling at fast speeds was dangerous to our health. Is the opposition to 5G on the grounds that the frequencies are unhealthy for our bodies a similar thing? Or is there a real danger? When people see how amazing and convenient and fast it is, they will ignore the risks and want the benefits. When the 5G system is fully set up, everything will be connected. We won’t need cash, bank card, phone, keys, etc. We won’t even need to drive our cars. Everything we do and everywhere we go will be monitored and controlled by the system. The physical health risk may be real, but actually the mental, political and social control is far more worrying. 5G is so fast that we will not have any control any more. The old way of doing things will be gone and if we are not connected to the system we will be excluded from society and may even starve!

3. Is Britain coming under Chinese 5G system control?

2020.05.china.skynetThe Chinese Government has been developing the “Tien Wang (天網; Skynet)” system since 2005 to aid in surveillance of criminals. The “Tien Wang” system is now integrated with the 5G system and uses face recognition to instantly and accurately monitor people’s movements. That’s why now the issue of human rights is being raised very seriously. In January 2020, the British Government approved a limited role for Huawei in building the country’s 5G new data network. “Huawei( 华为; For China)” was offering to do the work very fast and cheaply. However, Huawei’s relationship with the Chinese Government needs to be considered. (Read more...) We should weigh carefully the benefits and the risks of the 5G system and how it should be implemented.

4. People turning into numbers

In the book of Revelation, chapter 13, it talks about a sign put on the right hand or the forehead with the name or the number of the Beast – 666. We human beings, whether we are ill or healthy, poor or rich, old or yet unborn, we are all unique, created in the image of God and precious. The use of numbers as a way of managing people is not new:
the prison system uses numbering to identify people; in the current COVID-19 crisis we are becoming accustomed to think of those affected as numbers, not individuals; in the concentration camps of the Nazi regime, prisoners were tattooed with a number, and lost their names and identities altogether. Because we are warned about it in the Bible, we can look out for a system which imposes the insertion of a number on everyone’s hand or forehead.

Our role is not to try and prevent such a system, but to be aware what is happening, keep ourselves separate and prepare ourselves for the wedding of the Lamb as the Bride of Christ.


[ Lock Down & Open Up ]

Many countries, including the UK, closed their schools, restaurants, factories, offices and even their borders because of the spread of COVID-19. It looks like we are truly locked down in many areas, but some other areas have opened up.

1. Growing up through Lockdown
People are phoning more often to speak to friends and family, even those they have not spoken to for a long time. Christians cannot attend church services and meetings, but many are meeting online and inviting friends and family too. In our house we have started a family service every Sunday morning. We just all simply share a few verses, sing and play games, and we are seeing each one grow, especially the children. Even one morning when Noah came down late, sighed and said he had received nothing to share, God used that to speak to us all about being humble and making room for Jesus.

2. Stirred up through Lockdown

Every Wednesday morning a group of us used to meet for prayer and breakfast at a local cafe. Now we cannot go there but we started meeting on ZOOM. One friend has even joined the group from the East of England. We, 7 of us, share and have deep, heartfelt prayer for about 2 hours each week. Also a couple from London asked to have a Bible study with another friend on ZOOM. They were so hungry for the truth of God. It was amazing that their questions were met and have been stirred up more to know Jesus.

3. Carrying on through Lockdown

Noah has returned home for online school. Every morning we have a short family devotional time and then our small number of Forge members, 2 or 3, have sharing and prayer each day for individual and global issues. We may be in lockdown but worship and prayer and God’s word cannot be restricted!

4. Shopping and Serving through Lockdown

A couple of our friends have to be in isolation because their health puts them at risk. Qday is doing shopping and accompanying one of them to hospital visits. Please pray for this young man he is not a believer in Jesus yet and he is quite ill.

I have heard some people say that lockdown is really boring, or that these are frightening times, but for me it is not at all like that. Rather this is an opportunity to root down deeper into God and to give time to people I had not been paying much attention to. This time is a precious time that God has given to me.


2020.05.yohan[ The Forge Family & Friends News Update ]

1. Owen and Seungae : Business & Visa
Since Owen and Seungae returned from Korea at the end of February they have completed 2 weeks self-isolation at the Forge House and are now living at Owen’s Mum’s house until the end of lockdown. Owen is fixing up his gardening equipment and both are preparing for the next stage of his gardening business. Seungae’s spouse visa will expire in July, so she is preparing her documents for the renewal application. Please pray for this, the first visa was a miracle and they still do not meet the financial requirements.

2. Teme & Hara’s Visa Challenging Journey

Please also pray for our Eritrean friend Teme and his Korean wife Hara. She is in Korea and they are applying for a spouse visa, for which they will need a miracle too.

3. Yohan had Appendicitis Operation

Just a week before writing this Yohan became ill with stomach pains and some vomiting. Worried about dehydration we took him to the doctor, then to the local paediatric ward and they diagnosed appendicitis and decided to take out his appendix that evening. Bridget stayed with him 1 night in hospital. The doctors and nurses were very attentive, lovely and helpful, and he is making a very good recovery now at home.

4. End of Naeun’s journey in Wales

Naeun has been with us for the last 7 months and on 29th May she will fly back home. I am thankful that the COVID-19 situation meant she could stay longer than originally planned. She has already begun studying for her university entrance exam in Korea, probably in December. Please pray for her, it will be quite intense.


“I used to think following Jesus was hard. But, at some point l noticed myself thinking of living as a true Christian as not demanding but exciting and rewarding. It is not only me trying with my own effort but walking with Jesus everyday, each moment! I cannot achieve what l am aiming for at once, but with trial and error l am trying with him everyday, taking small steps.” (Naeun LEE)



Qday Music Album: “Tomorrow Never Comes!”

2019 09_tmrwnvrcmIt took four years to complete this music album with help from many musicians and artists including prayers and finances. It wasn’t easy for me, but I wasn’t alone, so I was able to complete it. This isn’t perfect but I have obeyed what God had told me to do so as Moses made a bronze serpent.

- You Tube links:

1. Tomorrow Never Comes!
2. The Only Way
3. Beginning & End
4. Enough
5. The Most Beautiful Thing
6. Set Free
7. Let Your Kingdom Come

- Amazon
link: (;)

- Apple Music link:(


Shalom shalom!

Qday LEE

on behalf of the Forge family


(+44) 7870 653157

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