Friday, January 18, 2019 -
This morning, my cellmate came to me very enthused about how God was dealing with him. Since I’ve been living in this tiny room with him, “J,” a self-described lifetime criminal, has been convinced I’m the one God said He would send who’d be the catalyst to help him dramatically change his life.
I’ve not tried to be “preachy” with “J,” just an example. He knows my heart and where my priorities are. But I do pray diligently for him, that if he truly does know the Lord, that he’d become totally sold out to Him, and would change those habits and behaviors that grieve the Lord. We’ve spoken about the fact that being a Christian is not just a hereditary thing, but a decision each person needs to make – to repent of their sin, accept Christ’s shed blood as their redemption, and make Him Lord of their lives.
Twice he’s come to me and told me he’s going to quit playing cards, but then in a few days, he’s back playing. This morning he told me that he was convicted when the Lord spoke to him last night while playing, and he knew he should stop. Then, right before the 9:00 count, one of the Muslim inmates, a medical doctor from Washington, D.C., asked James if he could talk to him.
The doctor told James he’d seen us “praying every night, right after the count, which is a good thing,” he said. However, he’s also seen James playing cards, and gambling is one of the worst sins – so he shouldn’t be doing that. James was amazed that this man out of the blue confronted him a mere few minutes after God convicted him. “That’s it,” “J,” said, “no more playing cards for me.” I’ve never mentioned anything to him about playing cards.
He then went on about how God sent me here to his cell to specifically be an encouragement to him. We’ll see what happens. Pray for him!
This is the second time God has miraculously used a Muslim here in our unit to speak to one of the men. The first one was the other day when another Muslim challenged another man who’d been discussing the Bible and Christianity with me. He had overheard us and told us both that Jesus never claimed to be the Son of God, and wasn’t. Off the top of my head, I couldn’t think of the Scriptures where Jesus claimed His deity – but I knew what this man said wasn’t true. So I went and looked up the Scriptures, wrote them down, and shared them with the one man I was discussing the Bible with. He was so excited and asked to keep them. I told him, “I wrote them down for Big (the Muslim), but I’ll go make a copy for you.” He was thrilled, and I caught him reading through them again later. He said he wanted to keep them. He’s mentioned it several times since and was even in the chapel on Sunday.
This afternoon, “J” heard from a lawyer that he’s being considered by his sentencing judge for an early release. He is very excited!
God is truly amazing! I really want to be at home with my family, but am happy He’s allowing me to speak, as insignificantly as it seems from my perspective, into the lives of “J,” “C,” “E,” and “S,” and Bones. Pray also for “JA,” “DT,” JL,” “EG,” and others I’ve had conversations with. Many know I am a Christian – and most in our unit know why I’m here. Please pray that God will show Himself through me and that many of these men might come into His kingdom, and be used mightily for spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ, our Lord, and Savior.