This young inmate vomited while the unit’s deputy was checking on everyone. He was the only one in his cell. His vomit sounded an alarm to the deputy’s sensitive nose. The vomitus smelled like “pruno” [prison wine]…
“I only had 3 small cups,” smilingly he told me.
Warning him that I would raise his shirt to further search for any abnormal findings, he calmly okayed me. His movement slightly restricted as his arms were handcuffed to his back. 2 deputies guarded us the whole time.
Searching intently, I found a small bump on his right forearm, where the visible vein protruded. It was slightly reddish with what appeared to be like a “prick” in the middle of that reddish spot.
With his vital signs being normal, there was no other peculiar things on him except for that bump and being slightly drunk after ingesting the illegal self-made wine. His speech was clear. He even had steady gait.
But prior to him coming, I reviewed his original charges which I sometimes performed to see if there would be any relation to whatever I would discover with their health problems. He had been in the jail for over a year after committing the use of illegal substance.
“Aha!” [A light just went on!]... Despite the slight protest from the jail’s main core of transportation deputies [the one assigning deputies that take inmate to the court, hospitals or other places], the person in charge had no choice but to obey regarding my decision to send this inmate to the county’s hospital to be evaluated for a possible just recent use of illegal substance.
After many hours had passed, as I peered into the lab result taken at the hospital, this inmate’s drug screen turned positive for opiates. [Opiates can come from use of heroin or other drugs like Morphine used for management of pain control]. Wherever he got that drug and illegally used it inside the prison, I just knew at that point that there would be a massive investigation on him, and that, his prison time would be longer because of this possible charge that would be added.
He could have been nearing the end of his prison term. But his habits kept winning over him. The freedom he could have attained in just a matter of days, had just slipped through him.
Unfortunately, inmates are using their talents on illegal things. They do not seem to follow the prison’s rules. They know how to improvise one thing into another that supports their habits of use of illegal substances. They know how to make wine from fruits they hoard from their meals. They know how to make shanks [illegal weapons] out of any metal objects, doesn’t really matter how big or how little. They know how to make ink and make a needle to perform tattoos for themselves or others.
In this spiritual journey we are in, us, Christians, would have been free if we don’t go back to our old habits, too. We all found that freedom when we receive Christ into our hearts. But sad to say, when we don’t listen to His commands, that freedom slips through us. We may not be physically locked up, but spiritually, we are. And in that process of committing sins again, we lock up “His Holy Spirit”, together with ours. In short, we GRIEVE the Spirit.
His activity within us is quenched. Our lives are aimless again when that happens, since we won’t experience the fullness of His Spirit working and His power in and through us. When we are filled with the Spirit, it means freedom for Him to occupy every part of our lives. We are guided by Him and controlled by Him.
Sins stop us from the filling of His Holy Spirit. And only by being obedient to God can we maintain that kind of relationship. If we remain carnal, we will not experience the abundant and fruitful Christian life…
Ephesians 4:30 - “Don’t grieve God. Don’t break His heart. His Holy Spirit, moving and breathing in you, is the most intimate part of your life, making you fit for Himself. Don’t take such a gift for granted.” [The Message]
Ephesians 5:18-20 - “Don’t drink too much wine. That cheapens your life. Drink the Spirit of God, huge draughts of Him. Sing hymns instead of drinking songs! Sing songs from your heart to Christ. Sing praises over everything, any excuse for a song to God the Father in the name of our Master, Jesus Christ.” [The Message]
The Attacker (5/15/09)
The sun was just peeking from the Eastern skies.
Out in the prison’s yard, some huge Sheriff’s buses were illuminated by the soft glow coming from the lights all over from the tall lamp posts. Their engines were turned on, warming up, before the buses would take the inmates to the different courts where they would have their trials.
Orange-uniformed men were lined up in pairs, joined together with handcuffs and chained, forming a long line. They already had their breakfast and had their morning medications prior to going to courts. Some were fidgeting, as they waited to board those buses.
All of a sudden, all hell broke loose! Two men were engaged in a fight, using weapons they made secretly for a while. Deputies called for help on the radio, both for custody back-up and medical staff, as well.
When the air was cleared and the other inmates were secured, one man was down on the floor. He sustained multiple gashes but two of them were deep. One cut was vertically etched from his left ear going down to the jaw line. The other dangerous cut was horizontal on his left neck, close to the jugular vein. Pool of blood dripped all over the floor. Holding his bleeding neck, he was pointing at the other inmate few feet away, being guarded by the other deputies.
The other man being accused was not hurt. There were no lacerations nor any other signs of trauma. He was obviously very agitated as he was being questioned by those deputies, while the medical staff started treating the other man on the floor. They cleaned the wounds and controlled the bleeding. That man was sent to the nearby hospital.
When the investigation was finalized, it turned out to be that the “downed man who was accusing the other inmate” was the attacker and the other one who didn’t have injury was the one attacked. The deputies found out that it was the second attempt to attack the unhurt man. Both attacks on him failed. He was well-prepared after the first attempt on him, that when the second attempt was done, he was able to defend himself and ended up injuring his attacker severely.
[Source: NLT Bible ]:
We also have an “accuser of the brethren.” Satan and his army of demons are the enemies of God and of everything good.
“Because God’s children are human beings – made of flesh and blood – Jesus also became flesh and blood by being born in human form. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the Devil, who had the power of death.” –Hebrews 2:14
Because of what Jesus had done [dying on the cross], we, who live in constant fear of death shouldn’t be afraid anymore. Jesus had freed us from that fear so we can live for Him. When we belong to God, we know that death is only the portal that leads into “eternal life”. [“Thank You Lord!].
Paul warned us, too that we also battle against the evil forces of Satan, who is a vicious fighter. But to be able to withstand their attacks, we must depend on God’s strength and use every piece of His armor. We face an army whose goal is to defeat Christ’s church. When we believe in Christ, they become our enemies. They will try any device to turn us away from the Lord.
Fear not! For God has provided His supernatural power to defeat Satan and his army, through His Holy Spirit within us. So, arm yourselves with God’s armor.
Let us be strong in the Lord's mighty power. Let's put on His whole armor to resist the enemy's attacks: put on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God's righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that we are well-prepared. We will need faith in every battle as our shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed by Satan and his army. Let us put on salvation as our helmet, not forgetting the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Let's pray at all times, on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. We must stay alert and be persistent in our prayers for all Christians everywhere. [Ephesians 6:10-18].