Life in Prison

browse around this website I talked today with a young man I know who is in prison for life.  Whenever I see him or hear from him, I am struck anew by the tragedy of a man’s whole life lived literally in a small cage, without opportunity to work, learn, create, produce – except as he can scrape together books, paper and pens from the generosity of others.  In spite of all, he is God’s man there, living as a Christian among men whose religion is often hate, where even other “Christians” revert to the prison status quo outside of weekly chapel.  Just to be willing to say in his quiet way, “I am a Christian,” and to follow that up with tolerance, forbearance, patience, and compassion for the bent and lost around him, takes great courage and steadfastness.

click now The situation of this young man, and others like him, who live in poverty and oppression, without hope of improvement, show our prison system to be a self-engendering disgrace.

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6 Responses to Life in Prison

  1. Jim says:

    In spite of the facts about the correctional system, this young man is free to be Christ’s man inside. He is growing, learning and giving beyond comprehension. But isn’t that just what happens when our reason is confronted by Jesus Christ. The result for some is faith, faith so strong, faith that knows the truth beyond this world, faith that heals and leads to charity. We are to be transformed by the love of God given in the Incarnation of Christ Jesus, our Lord. I am so proud of this young man. I give thanks for him. I worked almost 30 years in the system and probably reached few during that time. And here is a young man who by a simple of act of giving to another without strings, touches the heart of the other. My cuffs, stern words, even unto the truth, was rejected, but his words of “I know what you are feeling, because I am here with you,” touch the very heart, the place where Jesus makes a difference. Let us all be transformed by Christ that we touch the hearts of those around us. Charity, true charity, leads the other to Christ Jesus and His Dad!

  2. Kim says:

    This is a wonderful reflection, Susan, on the subject. While your friend has received a life sentence to a physical prison, there are countless souls walking around in a spiritual prison, all or most of their days.

    What must be comforting to your friend would be the knowledge that although, on this side of eternity, the days drag by and seem like an eternity, on the other side of eternity, this life will be but a proverbial blip on the screen. He will have countless days to experience utter freedom and movement and joy and unimaginable sights, sounds, beauty. No more loneliness, because he will be in the presence of God and all the rest of God’s family. And I believe that there will be a number of those in God’s family who were led to Christ by this young man behind cellbars. And because he already stands forgiven, he may hear the words, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” Some may find that ironic, or unjust, but thank God that Christ paid the price for what we all justly deserve.

    Thank God for your and Jim’s steadfast friendship to this young man also.

  3. Susan says:

    I am moved by these comments. Thank you!

  4. Lily says:

    This is a beautiful reflection, Mom. I’m so glad you shared it, and that you continue to visit. I’m sure it’s as much a blessing to him as it is to you and Dad — and to those of us who read your blogs! Love you lots.

  5. May God bless this young man. May God hold him in the palm of His hand.

  6. Karin Benning says:

    When we judge others’ lives, we judge ourselves. Only God knows what brings an individual to a given point in time, and causes him to hurt others because of what has gone before. At one point, when I was struggling with the concept of forgiveness in my own life, I read something that said I was to imagine that Jesus was sitting in a room with me across the table from the person by whom I felt wronged. Then I was to express the pain caused to me with all my heart. From that point on, it was up to Jesus to judge what happened. It made me feel able to let go because I realized that I was flawed just like everyone else, and soon, it would be my turn to be sitting across the table from Jesus and from the person I hurt. It breaks my heart when I hear of children being so broken by life’s experiences, that they only lead lives of dispair and destruction. If we are looking for places to be “activistic” perhaps that is a good place to start. What can we all do to help those children who are going down hurtful paths before it is too late? Lifelines, yes, lifelines. I saw the new Sandra Bullock movie (true story), and it so resonated with me. The real mother of the football player had a solution to all of this. Has anyone else seen it? (THE BLIND SIDE) What did you think of it?

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