A Look At God’s Influence In A Former Prison Inmate’s Life
Now that the man I had been writing to in prison since 1993 has finally served his 30 year term and been released, I thought it would be a good time to summarize all the people and groups that were involved in that man’s life and the lives of many of his fellow inmates and how God was orchestrating circumstances and relationships to come about during that time period. For the sake of anonymity, we will just refer to this man as “John”.
Fortunately, John’s mother was there for him by phone, letter and occasional visits throughout the years, less so with his brothers and sisters. However, before he finished his sentence and was released he had lost his parents and all 3 of his siblings.
Friends “on the outside” who operated local prison ministries were able to help John be discipled as he discipled others. Some of this occurred through the publication and distribution of Christian newsletters that typically contained articles on discipleship, evangelism and uplifting spiritual subjects. These external ministries at times provided Bibles and discipleship materials to John and his fellow inmates.
John was able to work with several prison chaplains over the years, assisting with various in-prison church programs.
Various friends assisted John and ministered to him by phone and through the mail. One such friend was a Christian attorney. Another friend was the author of this article who heard about John through an incarcerated man who had been writing to the author’s brother.
When John was finally released from prison after serving a more than 30 year sentence he was immediately connected with a Christian halfway house called “Eagle’s Nest” that provided a room and many other types of assistance to John to help him get integrated back into society. Some of that assistance included room and board, help setting up a bank account, obtaining any available government assistance (such as food stamps, medical assistance, etc.), acquiring a cell phone, getting transportation, finding a job, as well as getting Christian fellowship and discipleship on site at the halfway house.
Fortunately for John, he was able to transition from the halfway house back to his home town where his last remaining relatives lived and where one of his Christian pen-pals lived. This pen-pal was able to get John quickly connected with a local church in his home town. Other former inmates and some prison ministry workers in the state were also able to help John in various ways, including helping him with car repairs and home repairs.
As you can see, over the course of many years, God orchestrated the connections/relationships between this man (John) in prison and so many others outside the prison. God also orchestrated relationships for John with inmates within the prison walls who John now ministers to from outside those prison walls. The working of God in John’s life (as well as in the life of all of God’s children) is living proof of the truth of this Bible promise:
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28
Are you fellow Christian, paying attention to God’s working in YOUR life and have you thanked Him for it?
— RM Kane