One of my earlier posts “A Testimony Of Restoration” I shared a testimony of a young man named Ralph. Ralph recently came to the chapel and handed me a letter that he had written updating people on his current situation. As you read this letter say a little prayer for Ralph as he continues to rest in the Lord.
I can’t explain to you how good God has been in my life since I shared my testimony. Don’t get me wrong, it’s been a fight, but what a victory it is to be still standing strong for Jesus! Satan tries his hardest to weaken my faith, to get me to give up on all the things God promised me in the beginning. But I’m here to tell you that the devil is a liar. On February 26th of this year, after 7 years of being incarcerated I went up for parole. I can’t express to you the joy I felt for having a chance on entering back into society. I had a lot of plans and a mission that I was so focused on starting and completing for God. A mission that involves kids and young adults, because they are the ones who are coming to prison at a rapid pace. But unfortunately I was denied parole. Lord knows that was hard to swallow. I felt like the wall was closing in and the floor was disappearing. I was in a state of confusion. It just didn’t add up. I thought God was going to release me from this place and use me out there. Surely that is why He delivered me in the beginning. Right? But while I was in a state of confusion the Holy Spirit revealed to me at that moment Isaiah 55:8-9, and as I begun to read my spirit was lifted. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
Still this old flesh of mine wanted what it wanted and nothing else. But praise God that He has blessed me with an amazing Chaplain, Assistant Chaplain, and a host of brothers in Christ who encouraged me and showed me the love of a father, uncle, and brother. Now instead of waiting until I am released to start my mission for God. The mission starts now from in here. I am putting my focus on ministering and mentoring young kids and adults that come in here. Helping them with their GED, inviting them to church, help them find their gift to better serve the Lord, and most of all being a positive example to them. I can’t describe to you how happy I am and how free I feel since that time. Because all that did was reveal God’s plan for me. Yes, Satan tries different ways every day to tempt me with problems and foolishness. But the funny thing is, instead of telling God how big my problems are, I just tell my problems how big my God is and that no weapon formed against me shall prosper. So, here I am, still standing strong for Jesus, more confident in Him and His Word. Praising His name with music that the Holy Spirit put on my heart to write and share. Although I hated to be denied, I know it was all a part of God’s plan. One thing I’ve discovered is that God releases to us what we are able to handle properly. I have come to a place in my life where I don’t want anything He doesn’t want for me. I’ve gotten to a point now that if I ask God for something that He knows I can’t handle properly, I pray that He doesn’t give it to me. But rather give me the desire to learn and to earn it. To me the worst condition that a person can ever be in is to have something God has not prepared them to handle. I truly believe in my heart that I was ready to enter back into society. But God has another plan for me. So instead of using this as a stumbling block, this is my stepping stone.