[I covet your prayers as I will be away on Sabbatical for the next few weeks. While I am taking some extended time to rest, be with family & friends and connect with God, I hope you enjoy these blog posts that appeared on my blog in 2008.]
I woke up one night several weeks ago thinking of Daniel, a guy who came to faith at Gateway and then fell back into drug dealing with his brothers (all three are in the State Penitentiary). It was kind of weird that I had a dream about him. I’ve written him in prison on and off over the past three years, but I hadn’t been thinking about him. It was gonna be a very busy weekend and I had a lot to prepare for—our leadership retreat on Saturday, three services on Sunday, and speaking at a predominately African-American church in Austin Sunday night. I had to stay focused.
When I got to the office, I noticed a pile of mail I had not looked through. “Now is not the time to look through it,” I told myself. But I happened to see a handwritten return address with “Daniel” at the top. I felt like this was one of those God moments where He was trying to get my attention, so I opened it and read Daniel’s letter.
Daniel was struggling because another inmate who had become a spiritual mentor to him had been transferred suddenly. They had been reading scripture together, encouraging each other and praying together, and now he felt alone and abandoned by God. He hadn’t heard from me (I thought I’d written him, but it turns out months had gone by and I had not). It was the last thing I had time to do or felt like doing, but I stopped and wrote Daniel a note of encouragement. As I was writing, I had the thought “send him Soul Revolution” and encourage him to do it with other inmates.
I got a letter from Daniel today. He got the book and is going to do the 60-60 and find Running Partners to do it with in prison. He said, “I received your letter and book this week. Maybe by the time I see you, God will give me the words to adequately describe my feelings right now. I can just say, Salud!!! and Wow!!! I’ve already begun the 60-60 experiment and it has stirred emotions and given me hope that God is truly with me, even here in prison. I was struggling after James transferred; hurting in ways I hadn’t hurt in years. I started to cry out to God before I got your book. When I got it, I knew He was answering me. It’s like God loved me so much he woke you up to share His love with me. Isn’t that what you wrote in your book?”
Yes, it is…and it blows me away every time I see Him do it!