Our Stories

I’m sure you’ve probably heard the story of Jonah. You can picture that big fish with his mouth wide open and Jonah sitting in the belly. But would you believe that Jonah’s lesson can bring encouragement to someone in jail?   I had seen Judy almost weekly for the last few months. She had shared details of her life: her...
I had some conversations recently with some law enforcement officers about drug and alcohol abuse and recovery. I’m used to talking about this with people on the other end of the law enforcement spectrum — people who are locked up in a corrections facility or who have been released and hope to stay out. One officer I talked with told...
“Is it my fault?” cried Maggie, whose child was suffering from pneumonia. As she began to tell me her story, I soon discovered that Maggie was undergoing a crisis of faith. Her parents were very “religious.” Their religion demanded certain dietary laws, worship on Saturdays, covering the head, and special dress. Furthermore...
Father's Day
“Happy Father’s Day to the Best Dad Ever!” I read the card, smile, and thank my family, but deep inside, I know better.   I recall my past and I’m filled with shame. I remember moments of self-centeredness, of anger, of sharp words, of doing things I told them not to do. Have I failed my God and family? Let me...
The guys in my jail Bible discussion group were looking at what life outside of jail might be like as they followed Jesus. After weeks of finding out about God’s grace in the Bible, they were looking forward to the upside of that life. They’d had enough of the cycle of get high/get in trouble/get locked up, and they wanted what God...
While jail and hospital ministry have many similarities, the two have seldom crossed over. Once in a while, I have seen an inmate in the hospital, but until last month, I don’t think I’ve ever seen one of my former jail class attendees in the hospital. Those worlds collided in March, when I received a message from a hospital chaplain...