I had a situation in the jail yesterday where an inmate who had been released last summer had again been arrested. He hadn't actually been arrested but he was shipped back to Durham from prison. He had stopped by our headquarters back in the summer after not doing what he had told me he was going to do upon his release. He was with a woman and I asked him where he was living. He said that he was staying at the Budget Inn. I looked at the two of them and asked "are you having sex"? I think they were both looking for a rock to climb under. He got me aside then told me that he was. I told him that he was a fornicator and a liar and that he was on his way to hell. I was hard on him because he had taken over for a fantastic leader in the jail that had been shipped off to prison. He as many do had promised to get involved in the ministry and not to return to the old life.
Yesterday he tried to make cheap excuses and say that he really did not do what he is accused of. I again was very hard on him as I hit him with scripture on every lame excuse that he had. I told him that what he was experiencing was the fruit of a sinful life! He finally cracked and confessed to the fact that he new that he was not doing right. I then started to put him back together by telling him that I care for him and that I see the potential that he has to make an impact for Christ! He knows the Word of God but I always tell guys like him that the devil too knows the Word of God. You can't just talk it but you also must walk it! We again are on track for when he gets out in August. I told him that if he would have died in all the mess he was in that he would be in hell right now. I told him to praise the Lord that he still has breath and another chance to get it right! Pray for Shawn!
WHAT THE THUG LIFE DOES TO PARENTS
I promised a gang member (I hope to soon say ex-gang member) who I visited in the Durham County Jail yesterday that I would stop and see his parents to see how they are doing. I have been ministering to this man for close to 6 years. His mom and dad approached me at a murder scene on Hyde Park Avenue while a body was still lying under a sheet in the street. They were a very upbeat couple then seeming to have their lives together but they were very concerned about their sons ending up the same way. They said that they were both locked up in the jail and that they had heard about me working with gang members then asked if I would go see them. I promised them that I would and both of them are my friends today. The older of the two is probably the most hardcore gang member that I have ever personally met. I know of things that he has done that I hold in confidence praying that he will surrender to Jesus then make everything as right as it can possibly be. As he has told me things he will look at me with tears in his eyes and ask if the Lord can forgive him. Looking at pictures of "The Wall" at our headquarters really messed him up and I knew why. I assure him that with repentance and totally giving his life to the Lord that He will indeed forgive him. The conversation really went deep!
When I arrived at the parents house I walked in to see two people that really did not look like the people that I had met in 2010. They looked like they had aged 25 years. The house reeked of the pitiful, awful, disgusting smell of cigarette smoke! The mother never was without a cigarette in her hand the whole time I was there even after telling her that I had lost a wife to brain/lung cancers partly due to cigarettes. Cigarette smoke really tears me up and I felt sick as I drove home and now am just starting to feel better.
I had also heard loud voices coming from the house as I approached and that was them arguing with their son that I was with yesterday! This was in the hood people! No doubt that many of the things we had discussed yesterday were being torn apart by the devil! With what I heard I asked if I could talk to him and they handed me the phone. I asked him what was going on and attempted to guide him to the scriptures that I had given him to read yesterday. It was clear that the enemy definitely had control of him for now.
His parents profess to be Christians and at least when I got there were trying to talk to him about the Lord. I really like the parents but they may be Christians in their churches eyes but I do not believe by witnessing the fruit that they would be in the Lord's eyes. I always question a person truly being saved when they turn to cigarettes to get them through a situation instead of seeking the Lord. Getting back to the church situation, I know that it is said that they go to church. Many churches have people like this that say they are saved but they are never held accountable to the Word of God. I had to correct several things that were said by the dad because they went against scripture and the way I had guided their son yesterday according to the Bible. Even if it is in their house if they want me to help their love ones I will say what I need to say to keep things right! My next conversation with them will be about my concern about their souls. This gets really tough because what they consider to be Christian is different from true Christianity. I can tell this too by how messed up their sons are. There are many things that I cannot disclose that prove this also.
No doubt that this is what the gang life does to parents. Just yesterday he was concerned enough that he wanted me to stop by and check on them then he was already back to driving them crazy even more. I see the parents love for them but the gang life has taken it's toll. Such a rough situation for a son of one of gang members. He is in kindergarten and having to live among the smoke and chaos. I took time with him to talk to him about Jesus while all the craziness was going on.
This is one of so many different situations that I am working with. This situation has potential to go very bad. Please pray for wisdom, discernment, understanding and knowledge to me to work with this family. It's so important to get all of them to understand what a true relationship with the Lord really is. It is quite clear that somewhere they have been deceived.