This is a story that begins and ends in prison. It doesn’t start well but, by the grace of God, it will end well.
Meet Rick. He was born in a prison. His mother spent the first ten years of his life in prison. He spent the early, impressionable years of his life without his mother and it cost him dearly.
Rick grew up lonely and in emotional confusion. He medicated his pain through drugs. He supported his drug habit by committing petty thefts. Before long, Rick was arrested and went to prison, over and over again.
Eventually, Rick was given a life sentence under the three strikes law. During his time in prison God got ahold of his life and he began to study the bible for hours every day. He served twenty years in prison before a receiving a miraculous, unexpected pardon.
Although, Rick left prison with good intentions, eventually the difficulty of adjusting to life outside of an institution overcame him and he fell back into his old habits. He ended up losing his job and housing and landed back in the courtroom facing a severe ruling.
However, in another divine surprise, the judge sympathized with Rick’s life story and offered him an alternative to prison… He could enter a rehab program instead. Rick chose the Union Rescue Mission because he wanted God back in control of his life.
Rick got serious about his faith once again and recommitted his life to Christ. He will tell you that Jesus, through the Union Rescue Mission, saved his life. He graduated the program and is now an Apprentice at the URM serving the men at the mission.
Now Rick feels the call of God to go back to the prisons to teach and minister to inmates. He knows their plight and has tremendous, first-hand experience to relate to these men. He believes God redeems even our sin and mistakes in life and plans to get involved in a prison ministry upon leaving the mission within the next year.
Rick is taking seminary classes through the URM and reaching out to the men who are in the discipleship program at the mission. He is giving back and preparing for future ministry.
This past week we prayed together as he was going into a class to teach the “seeds”, men in the preliminary phase of the program. He had prepared a bible lesson and was excited to share the good news with the new “recruits”.
Please pray for Rick as he continues to prepare for ministry. Pray for God to fully redeem his past and turn the bad into good. Rick is like a human Boomarang… He wants to go back to where his story began… Rick wants to go back to prison. This time, not as a prisoner, but as a representative of Christ. Rick has had a prison break in that he has had a break from prison life… but pray for him as he intends to return in the name of Jesus!
Myra update: Myra met with her doctor and he said that the reports show that the treatment is working and reducing the cancer. So, they are going to continue treatment. She's very excited to see what God is doing. Listen to Myra share how this is affecting her faith in God
I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!