Wednesday, October 19, 2016

"Jailhouse conversions"

For over a year now I have been teaching Bible classes for the inmates of the Joe Ney Unit of the TDCJ Prison in Hondo, TX. In the past I had often heard people complain about "jailhouse conversions" with the assumption that such conversion experiences by inmates were suspect at best, and likely to be short lived after the inmate's release. My experience at the Ney Unit has given me a whole new perspective on Christian inmates. The men I have been teaching for the past year impress me in several ways:
  1. Many of them show a more than proficient knowledge of the Bible providing evidence that they are reading and studying their Bibles daily.
  2. These men have a passion for sharing their faith with other inmates and speaking up for Christ no matter how they may be treated in the process
  3. Several of the inmates have expressed a desire to go into ministry after their release from prison.
  4. I am often asked to pray for those in my class and their families. Yesterday a prisoner asked me to pray for revival to come to the Ney Unit, and he said he and other inmates are praying daily for this to happen.
  5. These men not only study their Bibles daily, but they also read other Christian literature made available to them by their library and by volunteer teachers.
I have a new respect for prison inmates who have found Christ behind bars, and a new perspective on the evidence of "jailhouse conversions."  The men I teach show evidence that Christ has made a huge and lasting change in their lives. I look forward to being with them each week, and I feel that time spent there is certainly not wasted.

No comments: