[photo credit: iwitness2u.com]
They are there….with majority in waves of orange uniforms, some in green, and still, others who are more dangerous clad in red. Housed in different cells, different units. Imprisoned for the crimes they had committed: robbery, rape, murder, battery and other things. Even inside, they still try to rule. Some, hungry for power, intimidate the new comers and try to manipulate them to do things for their purpose. It is sickening. It seems never ending.
Only for me to step out of those prison walls, into a bigger prison. We are no different than those incarcerated inmates imprisoned with our sins. Some in deeper traps: bondages.
But 2,000 years ago, out of love, Jesus yelled before dying: “It is finished”….
Sin is a no-laughing matter. Sins should grieve our souls because of what Jesus did. Out of His love for us. This is the reason why Jesus came and became the ultimate sacrifice for humanity’s sins. He took all of our baggage. And put it on His own. He became the payment for the penalty we deserved. It is God’s plan, long ago. In order for us to be saved from going into hell.
“And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; He will crush your head, and you will strike your heel.” - Genesis 3:15...
It is finished…on Jesus’ part. He fulfilled His work, His mission to save humanity from sins. He never gave up. He never quit the race He was in. Instead of people being drawn to the prince of this world, people would be drawn to Jesus as Lord of their lives. Jesus took away the sins of the world. He made life available to the full. And upon His death, Jesus became the ladder between heaven and earth.
John 1:51 - “The truth is, you will all see heaven open and the angels of God going up and down upon the Son of Man.” [NIV]
It is finished…It was not a cry of defeat but of victory instead…And through Jesus’ victory, we became victorious as well.
“Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” -John 15:13
But it is not finished…on our part. We are all running a race in this life’s journey. Because of our faith in Jesus, we will also face many obstacles. We will experience different degrees of hardships. Will we be able to say “it is finished!” at the end? Will we be able to say what Paul said?:
“I have fought a good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful. And now the prize awaits me - the crown of righteousness that the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on that great day of His return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to His glorious return.” - 2 Timothy 4:7-8
In this world full of many prisons, housing many hurting sinners who haven’t come to realize what Jesus did on the cross, we, believers, are running that race to share His cries of victory among those lost and still living defeated lives: “It is finished!”
Love is the essence of God’s law. Love was displayed on the cross. Love claimed victory. Now that the debt had been paid, we, followers of Christ, are under obligation not to fall into the same trap of sins and to share His love.
“8Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law.” - Romans 13:8
“Don’t move!” I commanded as he tried to go back to a neutral position. The other nurse requested one of the deputies to hold his head firmly to prevent it from being moved around. It was difficult for us to apply the neck brace with the pool of blood sitting on the way. I found a deep gash under his chin and I knew, the blood came from that and that there was a possibility now that he must have loosened his teeth. I applied a dressing and we just called for the ambulance to send him out. And when they came, the man was put on a board and was taken immediately to the county’s ER.
The deputies who saw the amount of blood looked disgusted as they saw it. They knew this man was hurt awfully bad with that fall.
“I have never seen anything like that amount of blood in a while!” commented one. I wasn’t saying anything, as was with the other nurse. We were both just trying to comfort the downed inmate.
Blood…Same blood shed by Jesus…Yet, no one was disgusted at that time he was crucified. The same people screaming “Hosanna!” when Jesus entered Jerusalem were the same ones screaming “crucify him!” to Pilate, few days later. Even though he wasn’t found guilty of any crimes. He was flogged, spat on, his head crowned with prickly thorns and was crucified. Jesus, yes, Jesus, not a criminal….bled to death…
But people didn't know that it was blood…was God’s plan to become the atonement for humanity’s sins. It was through His own Son’s blood that His forgiveness became available. Jesus’ blood became the sacrifice and made forgiveness of sins possible. We know now that blood gives life! How many times do you hear about blood donation drives as many hospitals are having low supply of blood to those needing transfusions who have injuries where they lost some good amount. It is the same with our Lord Jesus Christ. Through His blood, we gain eternal life!
“11 for the life of any creature is in its blood. I have given you the blood so you can make atonement for your sins. It is the blood, representing life, that brings you atonement.” - Leviticus 17:11
“For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.” - Matthew 26:28
“In Him, we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.” - Ephesians 1:7
“But now in Christ Jesus you once were far off have been made near by the blood of Christ.” - Ephesians 2:13
Are you like those people and Pilate who never stood up for what was right? We are like Pilate when we know what is right but decide not to do it. Have you accepted Jesus into your heart and believe that He truly died on the cross to save you from your sins? Your right decision might have unpleasant consequences but I guarantee you, that life with Jesus, you will be forever changed! Being "saved" means you realize you're a sinner and that there is nothing you can do on your own to save yourself. It is only by God's grace, through Christ's blood and your faith that saves you. If you understand this, there is a prayer on my side bar you can pray and with the right condition of your heart, pray that out loud....Receive God's forgiveness today...Receive the life giving power of His blood!
"Woman are never stronger than when they arm themselves with their weaknesses."
~ Madame Marie du Deffand
“Why won’t you give me some more sugar?” angrily demanded a huge female inmate one time I was checking the inmates’ blood sugar level.
She was talking about the packets of sweeteners we, medical staff, tried to give whenever we would do their Accuchecks. We usually had 2 packets ready for each inmate. But that morning, she was asking for more.
She made her question so loud, enough to make all the other women knew about her fearless demeanor. That she was that kind of woman: strong, tough, and was ready to show terror to any authority. Everybody started mumbling. I could have just called the Infirmary Deputy behind me. Easier than that. And she would have been in big trouble. The deputy glanced at me, waiting for my signal. But I motioned. For him to keep still on the male side as there were more male diabetics around that time.
“You don’t need to be angry!” I replied with a little higher tone than the usual. “If everyone gets 2 packets, it’s fair enough that everybody gets 2 packets. Do you understand?” I spoke with my voice piercing the thick, glass wall partition between us.
“God bless you!” she retorted back. To which I wasn’t thankful. The mumbling from others grew into a soft din, as if bees were buzzing.
“That‘s not very nice!” I yelled. “Because He is indeed good to you. He gave you those packets of sweeteners!” I replied back. The buzzing stopped. While she looked at me with a great surprise. Surprised that I knew what she meant. Surprised how quickly I understood her prison jargon, that she meant ill despite her nice-sounding words.
She grew quiet. Bowed her head low. The other women stopped mumbling. There was a deafening silence that ensued. I knew she felt that what I said was true. And I knew it penetrated her hard heart. Strong as she thought she was, there was no hard heart that would not be softened by God’s Word or truth.
Why, you may ask I got inappropriately upset this time when that woman just uttered “God bless you?” I always ask for the Lord’s discernment. Working in the prison now for 10 years, one inmate, many years ago, told me…that they say “God bless you” to staff when they couldn’t utter a profanity. Because they could be in big trouble for disrespecting the staff that way. So, just like that lady, she just cursed me and I sensed that at that time. I wouldn’t allow her to bully me. She might think she was a strong woman…
And to her, I looked like a tiny woman of weakness…But she didn’t know. I could be strong, too. But I would rather be a woman of strength than be a strong woman, like her. Strength that is not just given at birth. Strength, not just gained by terrifying others to gain power. Strength, arising from a big physique. No! I would rather be that woman of strength. Who had gone through the fires of trials in life. Who faced tribulations, over and over and beat me down. Trials that made me rely on the One Who was the true Source of strength. Yes, I would rather be that woman. With that strength that comes from knowing God.
For a woman of strength always realizes that it’s important to seek the Lord, not only on good times, but much more, during the hardest times of her life. Instead of falling away, she surrenders to His mercy, love, grace, power, wisdom, and strength.
And yes, I was a strong woman before but is now currently being molded to become what my heart desires: "to be a woman of strength".
“…the joy of the Lord is your strength.” ~ Nehemiah 8:10
“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” ~ Psalm 27:1
“Seek the Lord and His strength; seek His presence continually!” ~ Psalm 105:4
“…fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” ~ Isaiah 41:10
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.” ~ Ephesians 6:10
Please visit other encouraging posts at Spiritual Sundays, hosted by sisters Charlotte and Ginger. You can also join us, if you want to.
“The product, abortion, is skillfully marketed and sold to the woman at the crisis time in her life. She buys the product, finds it defective and wants to return it for a full refund. But, it’s too late.” ~ Carol Everett
I faced many of them during unexpected sick calls. Some getting incarcerated for the first time after being caught with drug use. So nervous and not knowing what would happen, they would complain of severe abdominal pain. Thinking that it would be an excuse to release them from the prison. They don’t know. They are just sent out to county’s ER to be evaluated and treated. Then, they are just returned to the prison when the treatment is done. Even if medical staff knows some of them are faking it, there is no other choice but to send them out to ER. For there is a growing “life” inside their womb. Despite the drug use.
“I am going to have an abortion,” confidently stated one to me, long time ago, during a sick call at the middle of the night.
“I respect your decision, Ma’am…And if you don’t mind me asking you, have you evaluated all of your options before doing so?” I queried. Trying not to be judgmental nor get into her privacy.
“I don’t want this baby!” she uttered.
[“Why did you get pregnant in the first place?” was the question screaming at the back of my mind that remained there….Just in the back of my mind...There are many contraceptives available out there...She was into drug addiction. And she denied being raped. That it was a mutual thing between her and the baby's father.]
Life of a Correctional Nurse is tough. Because you have to respect decisions that may be against what you believe in. Knowing that those people who are for abortions are here today, and were born! They were given a chance to be born! But not these unborn, premature babies: “precious beings”.
And I’m talking about those pregnant women who have the capacity to carry their baby into full term and who willingly knew that they would have a chance to get pregnant as they made love with the men they were with. Yet they are the same ones who decided that abortion was the only way they can get rid of this burden. Often times, they think of abortion as a quick solution to their unwanted pregnancies.
My heart breaks every time I hear a female prisoner stating their willingness to commit abortion. I often wonder if they are in the best mental capacity to make that decision. Because some of them are uncertain of what the future holds for their babies, being trapped in the cycle of drug use, of prostitution, of alcohol use and lack of family’s help or financial difficulties. I am not mad at them. I feel sorry for them because they are living broken lives that need the restoration that only comes from the Lord.
How do I share this: “11 For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” [Jeremiah 29:11] and this:
“You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother's womb.” Psalm 139:13
Abortion….To me is a man’s way of committing mercy [at least, that‘s what they think]. But in reality, it is a man’s way of ending God’s will for a precious life He created.
God's plan? "Terminated!"
"Brothers, do not be children in your thinking. Be infants in evil, but in your thinking be mature." -(1 Corinthians 14:20ESV)
"My son, fear the LORD and the king, and do not join with those who do otherwise, for disaster from them will rise suddenly, and who knows the ruin that will come from them both?" -(Proverbs 24:21-22 ESV)
"Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate." -(Psalms 127:3-5 ESV)
I glanced at my watch…7:30[in the morning]...I finally sat down after doing some treatments and started feeling better knowing that I was almost done for the day. When the phone rang. One of the units wanted to send an inmate complaining of breathing as they were eating chow [breakfast at that time].
“Send him down here if he’s able to walk,” I requested.
A young male showed up, complaining of sore throat for a few days. It wasn’t an emergency. But to him, the pain he felt whenever he swallowed food was an emergency. He knew that it wasn’t time yet for a regular sick call in the unit. I started interviewing him as the deputy wasn’t around. I was done obtaining the info I needed to know in order for me to better treat him. As soon as the deputy arrived, I let him in and took his vital signs.
“It’s a good thing. You don’t have a fever!” “Now, open your mouth and say ‘ahhh’” as I shone my little flashlight I always carried in my lab coat’s pocket.
“Your throat is just mildly red and the tonsils are mildly swollen. That means, you’re fighting some viral thing. Just try to get some rest and if you’re not nauseous, drink lots of fluids so you can fight this off,” I advised.
I gave him 3 small envelopes, each containing lozenges, medications for cold and another for pain. He smiled at me and felt relieved to know that it was nothing serious.
“Ma’am, thank you.”
“You’re wel…”I hardly finished my answer when he added, “God bless you.” I was surprised. For those words hardly come out of inmates’ mouths. I felt his sincere gratitude. I was glad that he remembered God in all of that. For that was my aim every time I go to work. To do things for God and His love be known through me. For I was once His enemy. And became His friend when I accepted Him into my heart. I deserved His wrath, yet, He loved me and gave me His mercy. He gave me spiritual blessings instead. My sins kept me apart from Him, Holy God, yet His grace saved me. Grace through faith…God’s unmerited favor. His fullness in my life. Grace He sent down from heaven to make a way again. For sinners’ broken relationships with Him to be mended by the blood shed on the cross.
It was His grace that made me become His servant here in the prison. Grace that overflowed and touched another, needing it. It was not only physical healing that he needed. It was the spiritual healing that he needed the most. Like the rest of the inmates who don’t know Jesus. And by His grace, as he tasted some of it, would linger. In that hurting heart of his. And I felt with certainty, that change would come. In His perfect time. At this special season of the year, please remember that it was not the nails that kept Jesus on that cross. It was God’s love. And Jesus’ willingness to surrender to His Father’s will. To save humanity.
“God bless you…” Simple words but when released from someone’s heart with a sincere gratitude and knowing that there was some divine intervention that occurred, meant a lot…Kindness is one of His gifts as we draw nearer Him. Kindness that we impart after we received it. Kindness, covered with love. And God is love. That is how His blessings work. From one life He touched, to another. From mine toward that inmate…He would never know…
He blessed me more than I blessed him…
“And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. - Ephesians 2:1-10
“It is better to live in a desert land than with a quarrelsome and fretful woman.” - Proverbs 21:19
“Ladies, please lower your voice or remain silent,” I requested as I was doing the blood sugar checks on the female side.
The din of early morning chats was reverberating way much, being in that tiny waiting area as a throng of about 12-15 diabetic women, of different ages, gathered from 2 different units. The sign: “No Talking!” was brightly posted on one of the walls but always was clearly ignored. I usually never got upset. But when I try to give them the “hush-hush”, it was also for safety as sometimes, some of them would try to distract me from doing a particular accucheck.
They knew me by now that I was one of those careful not to be distracted. In an instant that if they would become successful grabbing my attention, someone could easily steal needles or other things. A dangerous way of accumulating objects that could be improvised to process for a weapon. I never allowed them to do the accuchecks by two’s, despite us, having a lot of machines. I only tried to call them one by one. Lesser distraction, and no chance of mistakes on my part when administering their insulin doses.
The Bible cautioned women not to chat way too much! Or not to NAG! Can you imagine seeing a husband up in an attic, hiding there, than to be with his nagging wife? [Proverbs 25:24 - “It is better to live alone in the corner of an attic than with a contentious wife in a lovely home.”].
Nagging will do us, women, no good. If we can’t be peacemakers at home, how can we be away from making troubles in the community? Nagging does not help in a marriage. It is one of the reasons why marriages break up, too. We can all learn from the godly qualities of the Proverbs 31 woman. But “fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom”. [Proverbs 1:7]
So, let us be careful before we even speak. But only let those words that help build others up [Ephesians 4:29]…Check out this news from Italy. Nagging was the reason why this man chose to be in prison than to be home:
Crook Prefers Jail To Wife
An Italian crook begged to go back to jail after telling wardens life behind bars was better than living with his wife again.
Prison bosses had freed Luigi Folliero, 45, to serve the second year of his two-year sentence for theft under house arrest.
But after just 2 days at home, he fled back to Ponte San Leonardo jail, near Naples, and pleaded to go back in his old cell because he could not stand being at home with his wife. He told wardens: “She never stops moaning and nagging.”
I don’t know about you, but I don’t want my hubby to coop up in the attic!
“So, why do you do all these things if you are sending my arrestee for prejail check anyway?” queried an upset cop whose arrestee I didn’t want to accept to be booked in the jail yet because of obvious symptoms that he was “tweaking” from a daily dose of methamphetamine use.
His eyes were rolling upwards. Then, he would gaze at a blank space. Sometimes, able to answer my questions. Most of the time, he acted as if he was in his own world. I was taking his blood pressure which registered high, same with the pulse and he was running a low-grade fever. I told our Intake deputies that I wouldn’t admit him not until he was examined first in an ER. That was when the arresting cop heard me and got upset. Upset because of the impending hassle that he needed to take him to an ER and just couldn’t leave his arrestee.
I looked at the cop eye to eye. And with a soft answer, instead of being upset with him [as they knew the protocol of the booking process in the jail, that everyone gets screened first and cleared by nurses], I replied, “Sir, I took his vital signs so at least you could have a little information for whoever would treat this man that his blood pressure and pulse were high and that he was running a low grade fever. Those info’s would help them.”
He didn’t say anything and put the handcuffs back to the man’s wrists and put him in the back of his squad car. An hour or so later, the man was back. Calm but I had a feeling that he would still continue to show some signs of psychotic behavior. He was placed with other drunk bodies in a cell, all of them waiting to get sobered up. Few minutes later, some of them woke up, including this weird-acting man. He started a fight and he got pepper-sprayed on his face.
After being isolated, he started yelling profanities and started banging hard on the glass windows. I was on a break at that time and the deputies got a permission from the charge nurse to put this man on a safety chair, where he was restrained, to keep him from injuring himself. He couldn’t hit any windows or metal doors then. But the loud yelling continued. Any arriving cops couldn’t help but peeked through the window to see him as he attracted some attention.
Coming back from my break, the charge nurse told me what happened. So, I had to go and check up on him to make sure he was okay health-wise. As soon as I approached the big glass window, he stopped yelling. Instead, he looked at me like a lion waiting to pounce on a prey. He started mumbling instead. I softly mumbled too. With a prayer commanding for him to stop yelling and trying to scare me in Jesus’ Holy Name. He did stop. But every time I walked away, that was when he would continue to be so loud and screaming profanities at the top of his lungs. Every time I would go near him, he would stop and just stared at me with a piercing stare!
I was grateful for the unseen protective covering on me. The Armor of God that brings victory in this invisible war I was in. Every time. I knew he got quiet because it wasn’t me he was dealing with. I knew he saw the BELT OF TRUTH, THE BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, THE SANDALS OF PEACE, THE SHIELD OF FAITH, THE HELMET OF SALVATION and he heard when I uttered the sWORD, which was God’s Word. He was facing Christ.
I wasn’t alone in this invisible war. You were in it, too. The moment you gave your life to Christ. Let us be careful that we do not expose any part and make it vulnerable to the enemies’ attacks.
"3Buckle on your armor and advance into battle! 4 Harness the horses, and prepare to mount them. Put on your helmets, sharpen your spears, and prepare your armor" - Jeremiah 46:3-4.
Addendum: I was originally going to post this video "The Battle Belongs To The Lord" but being so tired from last night's work and sensing that it would make my post too long for you to read, I didn't. But after reading sister Charlotte's comment [thank you sister], I had a nudging that the Lord wants me to include this video. For whoever out there is facing a tough time in any kind of trial, the Lord wants to remind us that we can give all of our cares to Him. For the battle belongs to Him! Glory to God! Please silence my playlist on the side bar:
He was talking about the suicidal man who earlier was so loud, crazy, and started hitting his head and punched the heavy metal door with his right hand. That there was no choice but to send him out to the county’s ER so he could be treated for a laceration he sustained on his left eyebrow and his knuckles that got swollen on his right hand. In ER, the doctor gave him a combo of medications to calm him down and make him sleep.
Confident as he was, my confidence was on my Guardian, Whom I sought before going to work that night. Knowing that I was always limited with things that were about to happen. While He already knew before hand. I remained hopeful that my pleas were answered even before things were about to occur.
I checked on the naked man. Naked, as he was very suicidal and not allowed to have anything to prevent him from using them as potential weapons to hurt himself. The wild man the PM nurse described was calm in front of me. He was answering appropriately. He was cooperative. He declined my offer of water. He was positive that he wasn’t thirsty at that time. He thanked me when I told him that I would monitor him all night long. The loud yelling was replaced with soft whisper-like answers through the slits of the metal door so I could hear his replies. The angry demeanor depicted from the report had a smile shown to me and even in the soft glow of the yellowish light inside the cell, his perfect teeth glistened.
“Sleep! Go get some rest,” I commanded.
“I can’t. But I’ll try, Ma’am. Thank you,” he softly uttered. I saw him get down on the cold floor. Turned to his left side and used his left arm as his pillow. Slowly, he closed his eyes. And he remained quiet all throughout the night. He never gave me any problem.
The PM nurse’s prediction did not happen. It was my answered prayer that prevailed.
There is nothing wrong with being confident in this life. But life is like a fog. Here now…Then…Poof!!! Gone just like that.
We easily forget that we don’t have a lot of time to live. We just don’t know everything that is about to happen. If we want to have a meaningful life, we must live each day for Christ! So that, no matter what happens, even if our lives end, then we will discover that we have fulfilled what His plan is for us.
“13 Look here, you people who say, “Today or tomorrow we are going to a certain town and will stay there a year. We will do business there and make a profit.” 14 How do you know what will happen tomorrow? For your life is like the morning fog --- it’s here a little while, then it’s gone. 15 What you ought to say is, “If the Lord wants us to, we will live and do this or that.” 16 Otherwise you will be boasting about your own plans, and all such boasting is evil.”
- James 4:13-16
So...now...what are you doing here still? Go tell your spouse, children, friends that you love them :) Give them a hug and a kiss. And spend each day as if it's the last. Lord, may we be aware of each passing minute. That every minute is so precious. May we not waste the time doing things that do not glorify you. Please give us the boldness to share Your gift of forgiveness to those who haven't known nor heard about it. May your will be done in my life, O Lord. Thank You for Your love and mercy. I love you Lord. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
“It just became my habit,” I replied. “Most of them deny any vices. But from the past, when I asked some of them to do that, I usually found some needle tracks because some of them were using heroin.”
“That made sense,” replied the deputy with a smile. He started to walk away from my tiny clinic and never questioned me since. He just observed and trusted my ways of probing the newly-arrived arrestees, knowing that at times, I was using my instinct. [Spiritually, I call it ‘discernment’ from the Lord that I always ask for…].
And it wasn’t easy. Every time. To know that some of them were only telling half of the truth. To cover their crimes. Thinking that the cops would use their answers to press more charges.
“Tell me the truth,” I often uttered. “The cops who arrested you won’t use your answers against you. The info would be for the medical staff. So that if you ever go into withdrawal from using drugs or alcohol, we would know what to do right away to help you out,” I explained.
Some would obey. Some would remain hesitant because of fear. Some remained upset that they were being questioned in the first place. They would get up. Often with pride. And denial. Proud that they didn’t need to be caught. Because they claimed the use of “medical marijuana”. When they couldn’t even prove that they have severe health issues that required it. Denial - that it was still illegal.
“5 For I was born a sinner --yes, from the moment my mother conceived me. 6 But you desire honesty from my heart, so you can teach me to be wise in my inmost being.” - Psalm 51:5,6
God wants our hearts to be right with Him. No sin is too great to be forgiven! God can forgive any sin. That is…if our heart’s attitude is right…Our outward actions can never please God. For He requires a broken and repentant heart.
Psalm 51:17 - “The sacrifice you want is a broken spirit. A broken and repentant heart, O God, you will not despise.”
Are you truly sorry for your sins and genuinely want to stop? That’s what God wants…I pray that you will empty your cups [hearts or your lives] and have them be filled with His love!
The big fan didn’t help to dissipate the choking smell. It had spread more. As I warned newly-arrived Highway Patrol troopers bringing in another drunk arrestee. That man hit himself with the handcuffs on his wrists, acting strangely as blood alcohol level was drawn by the nurse in a separate room, meant for that purpose. There was no injury but he etched a mild abrasion on his mid-forehead. As he was overcome with the stinging pepper spray smell, he started coughing. He became combative to our Intake deputies. He was dragged to another cell, as his screaming voice echoed in all the corners of the prison’s Intake.
“Nurse!” hollered the Intake deputy. “We need you to check that guy acting out! He’s bleeding!”
“Bleeding? What did he do?” I queried.
“I’m not sure,” answered the deputy.
I brought my equipment to check his vital signs, only to be surprised with the sight of scattered pools of blood on the floor. The inmate’s left face was covered with dripping bright red blood. Getting saline and gauzes to clean him up, I didn’t even notice that I accidentally stepped on one of the red puddles and the sole of my shoe was covered with that man’s blood.
I cleaned his face well. There was no open laceration. No swelling. The abrasion he caused to himself earlier became visible. I knew something happened but I couldn’t prove what was done to make him cooperate.
The man became sober after 2 hours. He never complained of any pain. When I rechecked his mouth when he was more cooperative, there was no active bleeding. All of his teeth were intact.
I knew there were 5 deputies in that cell when I got there. I wasn’t accusing any of them that someone or most of them did this injury to this man. Because it was also possible that the man did this to himself since he already hit himself with the handcuffs earlier. It would be hard to prove something when there was no clear evidence.
Those deputies might have done their best to pacify a combative man. But even if they did an excellent job of doing so, I wondered if someone or some truly followed the protocols given them in handling such things?
Not all of us are called to be missionaries.We may not be a missionary, true, but we are all called to be His ambassadors. We are asked to be obedient to what He wants us to do for His Holy Name.
When we start with the work Christ started in each of us, there is a fine line between doing an excellent work and being obedient. We must be careful that when we are opting for excellence, we are not doing the work for our own benefits. We are to glorify Christ in everything that we say or do. The truth about Him and in Him should not be suppressed just to protect our work or life-style. If we claim we are God’s people, let’s reflect the way God is like in everything. Let us not strive for excellence but aim for obedience instead. And that’s what truly honors Him. To me, that is excellence!
“If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” - John 14:15
“Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you?” - Luke 6:46
I always try to help our LVN’s when “Accucheck” time comes on days that I’m working. Usually, that’s the time when we, nurses, get done transcribing doctor’s orders. I like helping on the female side, as there are so many male diabetics on the other part of the Infirmary. I do that so that the deputy does not have to supervise the females and he can help out where he is needed the most: on the male side.
Female diabetics come, marching in a row. Some are walking fast, some are slow. I can’t help but notice that some of them are looking more feminine. Because they know how to improvise and create make-up for their faces. Some use the ink from pens as their eyeliner. Others use coffee to use as their eyeshadow. Vaseline for their lips to make it shine as if they just applied a glossy lip gloss. I heard one time from another inmate during sick call that they wet the magazines and could get the ink from there to use as lipstick for their lips.
Doing so, what’s called “fake-up”, surely does make their appearance better. But I often wonder if they are fully aware of the environment they’re in and what brought them here at the prison. They can change their outside appearance so well using the simplest things available and even beyond one’s imagination, because of their creativity, but what matters should be the inner change. For true beauty comes from the inside. When make up bleeds or gets rubbed off, it just proves that these things on the outer part do not last. If they don't get that opportunity to change what's inside, then, they are still prone to committing crimes once released.
Many are deceived by what we see through the media or by what we hear, that an outer beauty is just something great to possess. With the invention of a lot of photo editing softwares, how true are these ads that we see that highlights the outer physical traits?
“Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God's sight is very precious.” - 1 Peter 3:3-4 [ESV]
For other inspiring posts, please visit Spiritual Sundays, hosted by sisters Charlotte and Ginger.
And yet so profound, so loud, and so far,
It fills you, it thrills you with measures unbroken,
And as soft, and as fair, and as far as a star.
Her rash seemed to have gotten red again. Itching woke her up and tired of having these rashes for a few days now, even after the doctor discontinued her pain medication, she requested to be seen, despite the time being so early in the morning.
“Don’t worry,” I reassured her. “All of your vital signs are okay. But I will keep you here at the Infirmary no matter how long it takes until you feel better. Okay?”
“Thank you,” she responded with a wide smile and a tone of gratitude, while attempting to scratch her puffy eyelids.
I consulted the on-call doctor from the county’s ER. I gave this female inmate having an allergic reaction to something with 2 kinds of shots. One to decrease the swelling and the other to help with itching. Noticing that while talking with the doctor, the pin-point rashes even got slightly redder and seemed to have been more diffused all over her body, I called the doctor back again and asked for his opinion if he wanted me to send the inmate to the hospital for further evaluation. Depending on my observations, he didn’t feel the need to have this inmate be seen, as another order for Epinephrine was given to aid with her breathing.
I reassured the inmate as she needed to wait 2 more hours and our jail doctor would be in, that very same morning. I had the deputy at the back unit bring out a mattress and blanket for her. So she could rest while waiting for the doctor. When morning came, I ordered her breakfast from the prison’s kitchen. I decided to re-check her vital signs as I saw the jail doctor walked in and started preparing all the charts she needed to see that day for doctor’s sick call.
I went up to the doctor and told her about the inmate. She remembered this particular inmate as she just saw her the day prior. I knew the rash would take a few days before they would go down. But I just wanted to make sure that there was no further evaluation or treatment needed for this particular case. She discontinued another pain medication. And told me I did the best I could and things she would have ordered. So, she didn’t need to see the inmate.
I summoned the inmate to the glass partition window. And informed her that the doctor didn’t need to see her but was aware of everything that happened. She was upset at the beginning. But when I explained that there was really nothing to do anymore for the rash since she was being given the medications for it for 2 days already, she calmed down. She accepted the fact that she needed to go back to her unit at that time. I told her to put a sick call and even to alert any staff in her unit if she felt that the symptoms would get worse.
She smiled at me and thanked me for everything I did. I told her to watch out from then on what she would eat, if there was anything new and to start keeping track of anything she would ingest to find out where this allergy was coming from. She agreed.
She accepted not being seen. She accepted that “silence treatment” as there was no other options available. How often do we go through silence treatment from our Greatest Physician when we feel that He must see us and answer our pleas? When everything seems urgent to us when in reality, that waiting period, that silence, will be a period for us to re-think things about our faith, about the way we deal with trials, about the way we trust in His plan? No matter what the outcome…Just because God is silent doesn’t mean He is not listening! God’s silence can be the answer to our pleas! Let us praise Him instead in this period of silence, knowing that during this time, there is a big revelation to come. It is not a silence of despair. For time is nothing to God.
"5guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long." - Psalm 25:5 [NIV]
"God never gives us discernment in order that we may criticize, but that we may intercede." ------ Oswald Chambers
Everyday, I always remind my son to always pray and ask for the Lord’s protection and discernment. As they started a busy schedule playing tennis, I was also busy as I volunteered to have some players ride with us in our car, whenever we needed to go to another school to compete.
There was a player who was very interested to have my son as his partner in the “doubles” game. He was so eager that he asked the coach if he could be paired with my son. The request was granted and when there was a “home” game, they won as they tried their partnership for the first time. That player was elated! My son, with a calm composure, was happy to be able to find a teammate he could be working with. Until…
We went to another school and they lost this time. The coach told me and my hubby that the other player though from the other school was already way ahead, playing in varsity and got demoted. In order for him to go back to his previous status, he needed to work his way up by beating junior varsity. So, the coach said that even though my son and the other boy lost, it was a good game and they played well since the score was close. But I noticed the boy distancing himself from my son. He seemed upset about the loss. I heard my son asked the other boy if he was okay. He said he was upset with himself. But the whole time, as I waited for the players to get done with the matches, I saw him always far from my son, either talking with some other members or just silent on his own. My son didn’t think of any and that broke my heart. Because I didn’t want that childlike-faith and innocence to be tainted with this world’s hypocrisy and self-centeredness. My own discernment was that: that boy was upset with my son. Actions spoke louder than his words!
“Dude, I’m an atheist!” uttered this same boy while riding in our car as we went to the other school. I wasn’t sure what precipitated this conversation.
“Why are you an atheist?” asked the other player riding with us.
“Just because I’m an atheist!” he proudly stated…
That happy mood on the way to school was replaced with an “upset” kind of mood as we headed back to their school, when the game was over. His being talkativeness was replaced with silence, on our way home.
I spoke with my son while having breakfast yesterday and told him, no matter what he would see from the other boy‘s actions, just keep praying for this boy and for their being “buddies” and pray to the Lord and only please the Lord, no one else. The truth came out during their training in the afternoon. The coach had noticed that the boy didn’t feel like playing well while practicing with my son. So the coach asked my son if there was something going on. My son told the coach he wasn’t sure what the other boy was feeling. But that if there were any errors during the game, he only would talk about his own faults and never blamed the other boy. And that after losing, he asked him if he was okay and he denied being upset with my son. He also asked him if he wanted to work on their mistakes together to improve their skills.
The coach was more concerned with my son seeing how hard he worked every time and always respected others. He asked my son how he felt about this boy's attitude towards him. I was so proud of my son’s answer, “It’s okay. It doesn't bother me. I know we can learn from our mistakes. Even if he doesn’t want to play with me, that’s okay.” So, the coach told him that maybe he could try to play singles, instead of doubles.
When I picked my son up after their training, he talked about the other boy with me and that he knew I was right about praying for protection and discernment at all times. I asked my son how he viewed this incident. We both agreed on the same thing: This was a blessing from the Lord: “to find out this boy’s attitude of not being a good sport while the game was still at a very early stage“. Because once they started playing “league” games, everything would count and to have this kind of attitude would only affect each other’s performance. My son witnessed and processed that it would be the same in this life’s journey. That he would be facing both the ups and downs. That despite being on the down side, he knew he must accept it and he could grow from it because life is not always about victory. That during losses, true courage means to accept that you have done something wrong, admit it, and learn from it.
Now, he knows why it’s important to ask for His discernment. It’s because we live with others who do not share the same values and convictions. And it’s only by His grace that he can make the right choices when making decisions. Right decisions that others who do not know Christ can see. And hopefully, through his actions, others can see the godly path he’s walking on and would want to be walking on that same road. Road that points to Jesus. All because of discernment.
That it’s not about playing tennis anymore. It’s not about winning in matches anymore. It’s about bringing Christ to whatever we do. It’s about winning souls for Christ that matters. It’s about bringing and sharing His light to those dark places where Christ wants us to be. It is all about Him.
“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.” - John 15:16
I'm re-posting this song I had submitted to a music publishing company to put the melody for my lyrics. I want to encourage you and remind you that God delights to show mercy! He is always glad when we repent. And He offers forgiveness to all who come back to Him. Today, if you are at the end of your road, completely lost and don't know where to go, what to do....if the world feels like crushing you with its weight and heavy burdens, confess your sins and receive His loving forgiveness. I have a prayer below my header you can pray with your heart to accept Jesus into your heart. He is inviting all of us to come and know Him. To receive His unconditional love. We are the reason Jesus died on that cross. Don't be too proud to just let this truth pass by...It is no coincidence that you are here today. And for those of us who already know Him, no matter how hard the trials we face, He is always with us...He never lets go! And we, too must repent for whatever taints our growth. For whatever is choking the roots that need to go deeper into His soil of love. To God be the glory! I pray that you are all encouraged as you come and leave and may the Lord's healing, comfort, blessings, wisdom and protection shower on all of you!
Matthew 11:28-30 - "Come to Me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you. Let Me teach you, because I'm humble and gentle, and you will find rest with your souls. For My yoke fits perfectly, and the burden I give you is light."
Who Is A God Like You?
Sometimes we can't seem to climb a mountain
In the dark valleys, we can't find our way
Losing hope and feeling like giving up
But when I trusted You I saw the Light
Who is a God like You Who pardons our sins?
Who is a God like You Who loves us endlessly?
Who is a God like You Who gave His own Son?
Who is a God like You Who forgives us all the time?
There is no loving God like You
Who always lifts us up when we're feeling low
There will never be a better place
Than to see You face to face
“Oh, my God! I had never seen anything like that!” exclaimed one of my co-workers as I was examining a male inmate, brought by the unit deputy.
He was grimacing in pain. He couldn’t sit up straight, complaining of pain coming from his back. He couldn’t sit right. He was trying to not put pressure on the right buttock. With both wrists secured by a handcuff, he kept moaning slightly.
The deputy pulled me aside. He said, “Ma’am, I just wanted you to know, I never hit him anywhere but only to his left forehead and maybe just the stomach area.”
The inmate just got booked and was just housed in their unit. While waiting to be assigned to have his own bed, the inmate rose to his feet and took a stance. Raising both of his fists up, he was going to aim at the deputy. That was a big mistake! The deputy who went to months or years of training for defense, got him first. In no time, the inmate was down on the floor, subdued and both wrists secured right away with a handcuff.
I lifted the man’s shirt on the back. To see where his complaint of pain was coming from. The deputy had a good reason for telling me where he hit the inmate. On the left side of this man’s body, there were 2 huge visible marks, a big welt with severe discoloration. One on the left buttock, close to the hip and one on the lateral side. But I knew it wasn’t caused by a blow. It looked more like an abscess. Lifting the shirt higher, I found 2 more bumps that looked the same as the previous abscesses. One closer to the right hip and where he was complaining of pain the most was coming from the biggest abscess on the right lower buttock. No wonder he couldn’t sit straight!
“Sir, you have to tell me where these infected areas came from! Were you using heroin?”
“Yes,” was the soft reply with a slight shaking of his head, afraid of what was discovered.
“I had someone shoot it into my back! And I use it everyday!” he added.
“Whewww….,” my co-worker uttered when she saw these. “I had never seen anyone shoot heroin into their backs. Those looked awful. I don’t think he’ll change,” she commented.
I sent the man to the hospital for further evaluation and treatment. I would like to believe, too that there was no more hope in his situation. So trapped in the web of heroin use. But so, it would be the same for others, trapped in adultery, other substance abuse, robbery, pornography, and I could go on and on. But you know what…That was us thinking…Humans…So limited with knowledge and understanding. What we wanted to believe wouldn’t be the same for God Who believed in restoration and healing, otherwise. The One Who sent His own Son to die on the cross to set all of humanity free. That is…if we believe. In that truth!
I pray that most of the heroin users I come in contact with, will discover that their false source of peace and comfort and elation from using this illegal substance is only temporary and destructive. True peace and comfort only comes from knowing Jesus Christ! That’s the truth!
“You’re it! Sorry…” uttered the Charge Nurse as I was just arriving at work last night.
“Why?” I asked with a puzzled look.
“I don’t feel good, so I’m going home…”
“You’re ‘it’” meant I would be the Charge Nurse when she planned on leaving. She didn’t look good but she knew the responsibilities she was putting on my plate was enormous last night. She has not been feeling well but chose to come in, only to leave. That was difficult though. Because that would mean that she was shortening our number of staff to only me and just another nurse. Covering the entire correctional facility that housed 3,000 something inmates. That was huge! Not including the other jails in different cities that relied on us for any medical decisions.
I took a deep breath after she gave me the report. Everybody was feeling the tension at first as they knew it wasn’t easy what was being passed on to me. Yet, they saw me accepted it with calmness. I could have gotten upset. But my Big Boss reminded me “to be slow to anger“ [Psalm 145:8]. I could have vented out my complaint of that “being unfair”. But my Boss left a memo in my heart that He would “fight for me and I just needed to be still [Exodus 14:13]. I could have raised a white flag surrendering to the night’s massive piled up workload but my Boss insisted that I “shouldn‘t be afraid for He would help me…” [Isaiah 41:13].
And as promised that He would never leave us nor forsake us, the night went by smoothly despite the mountains of work. Everything was done before our night shift ended. There was a call-off but I managed to re-distribute the day’s staffing and had another nurse float to that facility that needed coverage.
I want to share and remind you, this is the reason why I continue to have courage working in this dark place:
Lord, thank You for always being there with me. Thank You for replacing my fears with courage. Thank You for replacing my weakness with Your strength. Thank You for replacing my complaints to gratitude. Thank You for covering me and my workplace with Your peace, despite the chaos I faced, along with my co-workers. Thank You for guiding me with Your wisdom to face those things that otherwise would have given me doubts and confusions. Thank You for giving me discernment to know what was the right attitude versus the wrong attitude. Glory to You Oh Lord. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
For other encouraging posts, please head over to Spiritual Sundays, hosted by sisters Ginger and Charlotte. God bless.
He was crawling on the floor. Toward the slightly hidden toilet in a corner where he vomited. As other drunk bodies either ignored his behavior or just didn’t have a clue, too, to what was going on around each one of them. Deputies took turn. To write on the logs to make sure that everyone was okay. And my signature was in each of those logs, too. Writing down my observation. Making sure there were no obvious signs of health problems.
“Are you okay, Mr. M.?” I yelled through a thick glass partition window. He just glanced at me. And gave me a mean look. As if I bothered him to his short journey, moving inch to inch from the door toward that corner.
Then, more arrestees came. I glanced at my watch: “2:30 a.m.” That was the usual time when it would get busy at the prison’s Intake. When officers’ cars would start piling up outside the yard to bring their “arrested males or females”.
I was screening someone when a loud banging started on the glass window.
“Stop it!” yelled one of our own deputies.
“Bam! Bam! Bam!” I looked and saw Mr. M. doing sign language, with his right thumb and index finger, giving invisible puffs to his widely-opened mouth, holding his invisible inhaler.
“Nurse! I need an inhaler!” he yelled.
“Bam! Bam! Bam!”
“Didn’t I tell you to stop banging the window?” yelled the deputy another time.
“Nurse! Nurse! Bam! Bam! Bam!” I just looked calmly and finished questioning the arrestee in front of me. As I got done, I held the others waiting in line and went really quick to talk to Mr. M. who ignored me earlier. Holding an oxygen saturation monitor, the deputy opened a tiny metal door so he could put his fingers out and I took his oxygen level: 97% [which was great!].
“Take a deep breath!” I commanded. There were no audible wheezes.
“Just rest, Mr. M. I’m sorry that I can’t give you an inhaler. You’re obviously not having any asthma attacks and you are to be released in a few hours. It is our policy not to medicate those who are being released…And stop banging on the window. I can hear you and see you!” I explained.
And the banging continued after my assessment. He was mad at me for not giving him an inhaler. He kept calling for my attention when he knew that I already heard him and that I was right there so near to his cell the whole time. As he became more sober, the banging of the window lessened and he became more cooperative. I saw him let out of his cell to gather his belongings. Yes, he was freed. But one of these days, I knew I would hear him call “nurse!” again. He was trapped in the cycle of alcohol abuse. He had forgotten his own medical needs while he enjoyed his drinking. But one day, when caught again, and surely he wouldn’t be having fun locked up without his bottle, that would be the time when he would remember he has asthma.
I could just hear: “Nurse! Nurse! Bam! Bam! Bam!”…
“Lord, forgive us for the times that we forget you when everything is going great in our lives. Then, when things go wrong, that’s when some of us start calling Your Name out loud, wanting Your attention, Your help. Thank You that You are always forgiving, always waiting faithfully for those of us who have strayed so far from You. Thank You for loving us unconditionally. In Jesus’ Name. Amen”
From the video:
Man: “It has passed too much time…since I forgot Jesus…Would He ever listen to me if I call on Him now?…J…e…s…u…s… Jesus..”
Jesus: “My children rejoice! This is the old voice that I’ve wished to listen to so much for a long time…”
“Rcubes…What are you giving up this year?” asked a co-worker as I was putting the doctor’s orders in the computer.
“Excuse me?” I asked, not quite sure what she meant by that.
“It’s Lent…What are you giving up? Food? Shopping?” intruded another co-worker in our conversation.
“Ohhh…” I said as I finally got what she meant by that questionnaire.
“I gave up everything long time ago to Christ,” I replied. Both of them with a perplexed look, not comprehending then what those words meant.
I kept working and my mind was busy. I was grateful that God had provided a way of salvation. Through Jesus Christ. Knowing that we are all infected by sin. And we cannot save ourselves with our own efforts.
And now, as followers of Christ, we must continue to keep guarding this truth against the temptation of using service, good deeds, giving, and any other effort as a substitute for faith.
“19 For when I tried to keep the law, I realized I could never earn God’s approval. So I died to the law so that I might live for God. I have been crucified with Christ. 20 I, myself, no longer live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21 I am not one of those who treats the grace of God as meaningless. For if we could be saved keeping the law, then there was no need for Christ to die.” ~ Galatians 2:19-21
“Why won’t you guys listen to me? I don’t deserve this! I was the one who got hit and this cop arrested me!” yelled a drunk female arrestee, with buckets of tears freely-flowing down her flushed cheeks.
“Shh…Calm down, Ma’am. I need you to be quiet so I can hear your blood pressure,” I softly commanded.
“No! It’s so unfair!” she continued to yell at the top of her lungs as both of her arms were immobilized by 2 female deputies.
After the machine was not able to get a blood pressure reading, I got 160/100 using the manual cuff.
“Sorry, Officer…I can’t admit her. Her blood pressure is too high and she needs to be examined at the ER,” I informed the arresting cop.
He knew I had been patient with his arrestee. He didn’t say anything for a minute. Then, came a request:
“Ma’am, will you please give me a chance to talk to her and let her calm down a little bit? Please?”…He knew every minute was important for the nurses at the prison. There was no time for that. Either we would okay for their arrestees to stay in the jail or not. Simple as that.
But seeing how agitated this drunk woman was, and having a little bit of quiet time on the male side, I agreed. I heard the cop let out a sigh. Sigh of relief.
Talked to her, he did. But it wasn’t working. She became more agitated, seeing his face and being reminded of her “unfair arrest” [her own opinion]. I intervened…
“Ma’am…do you want to go home sooner?”
“Yes! Because I don’t belong here!” her answer penetrating my ear drums with an uproar.
“Shh...Okay, then. Why don’t you relax and just calm down! They will just wait out until you get sober. If you remain calm and just listen to them, you will be released in a few hours. However, if you choose not to, the longer you are going to stay here!” I replied.
She didn’t say anything. Tears continued to flow. But silence ensued for a few minutes.
“There you go! Why don’t you take a deep breath!” And she obeyed…Sensing she was more relaxed after a few minutes, I rechecked her blood pressure: “140/90”. A more acceptable reading. I grabbed my pen and signed the health screen form so she could be processed. The cop shouted with joy and thanked me for being so patient and giving him another chance.
“You don’t need to thank me. I saw that from the beginning. She needed to just be still and relax,” I told the officer.
So many distractions here in this planet. Distractions that take away our attention and time that should be spent on seeking God. Life is unfair we say, but the reason is not because God does not hear our prayers. It is not because He is so far away. It is because we don’t often pause nor give time to listen to His voice. It is because we don’t seek that place of rest where we can meet Him.
He longs to talk to us. He longs for us to seek Him first. He wants us to put Him as number 1 in our lives. In our hearts. In our minds. But we never see it that way. We are either too distracted or our pride meter is running high…It is time to pause. Time to take a deep breath. Time to be still. Time to know that there is only one God Who loves us first.
“How come you have bruises on your left arm?”
“It’s the cops! They did something to it!” a drunk male whispered, as he slowly rotated his left shoulder. The smell of alcohol reeked inside that small room and I held my breath.
“I think my shoulder hurt, too. I don't know what the cops did to me,” he whined.
Checking his charges really quick, I uttered, “Sir, you were arrested because you had a fight with your spouse. Am I correct?”
He just scratched his head. Didn’t say anything.
“In case, you end up staying in the jail, you may put a sick call request though. If your shoulder or the bruises start bothering you. Okay?”
"Tell me the truth. Lay it all out. Otherwise, I wouldn't be able to help you with your medical condition if you don't tell me what truly happened."
He just whispered a soft “thank you”. The cop was smiling at me. He knew that I caught him lying. For blaming the authorities when he was injured fighting with his spouse. He tried to resist their arrest.
“Next!”….I yelled as I was wondering what the next case would be. The arresting cop stood by the door and called his arrestee to sit down in front of me.
God has been calling “next!” to each of us. He wants us to approach His room of mercy. But we couldn’t approach Him without the Cop standing before us. We can only approach God’s mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. No one else. No other means.
At the end of the road? Don't know where to go in your life's journey? Tell him the truth!
Hooked up on drugs and other illegal substances? Give it to Him.
Tired of trials and heavy loads? Give it to Him!
Lay down your pride...Be still...Listen to His call!
“Now let me address all of you, high and low, rich and poor, one with another, to accept of mercy and grace while it is offered to you; Now is the accepted time, now is the day of salvation; and will you not accept it, now it is offered unto you?” - George Whitefield
[On the side note, I said I was busy! I am! But glory to God for giving me time and strength to do everything today and still be able to write for Him. Thank You Lord and thank You that through Jesus, we are able to come boldly before Your throne of grace. I love You Lord!]….
Okay, precious friends...Gotta' go again and may you all have a wonderful day and be strong in the Lord's mighty power. Always ask for His protection in everything that you do. If I have time later, I will try to visit you and maybe we can all have coffee? God bless you all!
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 himseld and ended up injuring his attacker severely.
[Source: Life Application 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].