Helping and Enriching Lives Through Prison Ministry

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Despite the sometimes discouragement of this work, this does bring joy.


I wanted to wait to be able to share with everyone some really good news.

Robert  was released from prison on March 2015 after serving about two and a half years in prison. It was his second time in prison even though he was only 24 at his release.  I only knew Robert for about a year before he was released, and he died with Christ only 10 months before he left prison.

Frankly, if I would have rated his chances of making it I would have said most likely he wouldn’t.  He was much younger than most men I work with, very impressionable, and I hadn’t known him very long.  Robert went to work for the brother that purchased the lawn service we once operated.  After a few months, he was offered a job from a brother at our congregation with his company spraying lawns and doing pest control.  I wrote about Robert in the beginning of 2016.  His employer, at that time said that “Robert is a very hard worker, very humble…” Robert has continued to be just that.  A little over a year ago I approached Greg  about Robert.  Greg is an evangelist who has been doing full-time prison work in the area for about the last five years.  Before that Greg taught the gospel in Belize for about 10 years.  I had met Greg’s daughter Katie a few times with the rest of Greg’s family.  He had mentioned to me that she was disappointed in some of the young men that were interested in her because it seemed they lacked a certain seriousness about spiritual things.

I asked Greg if he would agree to let Robert call her sometime.  Greg already knew Robert over the last couple of years while at Lawtey and then through his interaction with the him at the transition house.  Greg considered my request for some time and then agreed, but only to talk to see if they might develop a friendship.  Well they hit it off the first time they talked.  Robert eventually got up the courage to ask Greg if he could come over on a Sunday afternoon and meet her and the family.  Greg made it very clear to them both that this process would be slow, and that if Robert wouldn’t abide by that then to “hit the road.”  Those are my words not necessarily Greg’s!  Robert stayed humble.  They fell for each other quickly.  Robert came back from that first visit floating instead of walking.  He told me he had never met a girl like Katie.  He had never experienced a relationship with a female based on God.  Greg kept the reins pulled tightly, but gradually allowed Robert to talk with her more and more, to come over and go to worship services with them, and to spend time together with their family.  Finally, Robert got the courage a few months ago to ask Greg and Christine (Greg’s wife) if he could marry Katie.  Robert sweated asking Greg a lot more than Christine!  Greg agreed.  God willing, they will be married on March 25.

That’s not the end of the story.  Robert has lived at the transition house since his release, so they would need a place to live in our area. Unfortunately, they ran into some difficulties because of Robert’s past.  Many places turned them down and others were just too expensive.  They didn’t have the credit history to borrow money to get a place even though Robert has done a really good job managing his money since his release.  I decided to approach a previous donor about lending money to the ministry on an interest only basis for the purchase of a place for Robert and Katie.  The plan would be for them to purchase the place from the ministry within five years and repay the donor.  Well we received the funds and found a mobile home on a piece of property in the area that fit their budget and we were able to purchase it.  The picture shows them in front of their new place.  Robert and Katie will start their new life together in a few weeks.

Despite the sometimes discouragement of this work, this does bring joy. I hope it brings joy to every one of you who have supported this work in whatever way you have.  The cards, the calls, the cars, the financial gifts, the visits, the embraces all have played a part in this victory for the King.  Let us all praise God for a changed life and a better future!