The Why of Lighthouse


Feb 24

Life is filled with decisions and circumstances that require God’s help. Just like any other worthwhile project, publishing a magazine for prisoners can be tough.

The pain and strain of life reminds me to focus on our why. Why do we even publish the Loaves & Fishes magazine? Why does Lighthouse exist? It really comes down to this: We believe literature can bring life and freedom to millions of prisoners unlike any other method.

Literature can bring life and freedom to millions of prisoners unlike any other method.

We can talk about our what—the free discipleship magazine for prisoners, sending boxes of literature to chaplains, bringing sound Biblical teaching to prisoners, and visiting lonely prisoners with mail. And our how—a team of editors, designers, and reviewers, the amazing software we use to manage our database, data entry, and the logistics of getting mail from our facility to prisons and jails across the nation. But the why is really what gives us all a fresh perspective and fuels our passion.

Leverage: Printed literature gives us leverage. Once a new book is written, edited, and designed, it’s easy to duplicate it a million times with 100% accuracy. The influence of literature lives on for years, decades, even centuries, without any additional investment. Burn one copy of Loaves & Fishes, and there are likely hundreds of thousands more still circulating among prison bunks, libraries, drawers, and trash cans.

This leverage multiplies the effects of our Kingdom investment. Written words cannot replace relationships and serving on a personal level, yet personal relationships will never be able to achieve the level of massive influence the printing press and other technology have.

Influence: Like a road map, literature influences destinies. Whether for good or evil, written words are influencing billions of people today and shaping the coming generations. Literature persistently changes minds and invokes emotions. Effective literature can change the reader permanently. God uses literature to bring souls into His Kingdom and to disciple believers.

Liberty: Literature has liberty in the prisons like none of us have. Show me a messenger that is welcome in a prisoner’s bunk all day any day. Written words make themselves at home in desk drawers, purses, and truck consoles—even under the pillow of a seeking soul—right within reach exactly when the recipient is ready to open his heart.

The Ten Commandments are an example of literature, inscribed on stone tablets by the finger of God. It was important to God that His words were written, not just spoken. When Moses demolished the “literature,” God rewrote the commandments for His people.

Literature is powerful, and God is using it to change lives. It gives us leverage to make more of an impact than we could otherwise. Literature has liberty to preach and teach behind prison doors when the person is ready, even 1,000 miles away at 2:00 in the morning.

As we shared before, the fields are ripe for harvest, and there are many open doors in prison. Literally thousands have asked us to speak into their lives.

Will we use the opportunities of publishing before the night comes when no one can work? Or will we allow Satan’s servants to saturate the prisons with his message while we lag behind, hoping someone else will finish this task?

For the Kingdom,

Lavern Gingerich
Lighthouse Publishing

PS. The next issue of Loaves & Fishes is almost ready for review and should be ready to print this month. The printing will cost us at least $15,000. Our goal is to get this issue out the door by the first of April. Click here to make an online donation, or mail your gift to the following address:

Lighthouse Publishing
PO Box 332
Bedford, PA 15522

Checks must be payable to Burning Bush Mennonite Church.