Despite the busyness last Friday night at Intake, I would always try to make time to check the mentally ill inmate locked up in safety cell 1. His cell was visible from the nurse’s door. Only a few steps away. Prior to starting my shift, I saw his naked body lying on the cold floor. I heard he had been there for 2 weeks. The psych doctor hasn’t moved him back into the unit that housed the mentally ill patients. He kept banging his head the other day until he sustained a gash on his forehead. He sustained a big wound also on his left, upper arm. Because of his potential severe threat to his own safety, he became a regular resident of that cold cell.
My neck was getting tired at around 5 o’clock in the morning. I got up and decided to check again on Mr. V. I was barely nearing his cell, when I saw blood being smeared with his index finger from the top of the small glass window, going downward. The only window we used to check up on him.
“Deputy!” I yelled, as I saw the Intake deputies busy processing the arrestees, getting their booking photos and fingerprints.
“Please come and I need to see Mr. V. now. He just smeared some blood on his window.”
One deputy quickly came and turned up the light inside the cell brighter.
“Come closer V!” he yelled.
I wanted to make sure that he was not actively bleeding anywhere. I looked at his old gash on his forehead. It was intact. I couldn’t find any other visible wounds.
“Raise your left arm higher!” I commanded. To which he followed. The wound was more red. And appeared slightly raw. From visible marks of picking and scratching with his nails. But it was not actively bleeding. He managed to pick on it one time and get enough blood to smear his cell’s window.
I tried to communicate that it was not a good thing for him to do. If he wanted to get out of that cell. I wasn’t sure how much of my words would penetrate his understanding. But somehow he did. He remained quiet and didn’t do this behavior again.
I noticed how the deputies were not interested anymore and not even concerned when I called to their attention. I think they had grown tired because he had been doing this behavior for a while. Not that they didn’t care. But being the busiest night that day, they were non-stop processing the many bodies that were brought in from the streets.
His smearing of the blood might not be noticed anymore. But the smearing of blood thousands of years ago was significant back in Moses’ time. In preparation for the Israelites’ exit from Egypt, God brought down plagues on the Egyptians, the 10th plague being the killing of every firstborn males of the Egyptians. But the Hebrews were instructed to mark their doorposts with the blood of a spring lamb. Upon seeing this, the Spirit of the Lord passed over these homes, sparing the lives of the firstborns of the Israelites, His people. It was known as “Passover” in Jewish holidays.
It is the story of redemption. That’s how God chose to buy us back or save us from our sins. He offered His only Son in exchange for us. The life of a young lamb was sacrificed to save the sinner’s life. When Jesus came, he substituted his perfect life for our sinful ways! He is our Redeemer! He is The Lamb!
Jesus blood was smeared on the cross. And if you recognize the deadly consequences of sins and want to be saved from them, all you need to do is trust and accept Jesus’ gift of eternal life. He already paid for our sins. Even if you are busy with the mundane things of life, you have to make time and take notice. Jesus’ sacrifice made animal sacrifice no longer necessary… He redeemed us all by His death on the cross!!! Glory be to God!
“Remove this wicked person from among you so that you can stay pure. Christ, our Passover Lamb, has been sacrificed for us. So let us celebrate the festival, not by eating the old bread of wickedness and evil, but by eating the new bread of purity and truth.” ~ 1 Corinthians 5:7-8
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].