February 24, 2013
I have made contact with some friends from the county jail I was at first who made a huge impact in my life. When I first got arrested, I was so confused. I didn’t know what was going to happen in my life. I didn’t know if I was ever getting out! And there were 2 ladies at West Baton Rouge Detention Center that welcomed me with open arms. They told me right away that God had a plan for my life and this was part of it. I believed them. And I received Jesus Christ again as my Savior.
Through those first few months, these 2 ladies guided me back to a life I once knew, but had run from for a lot of years. They taught me the Word and explained it to me in ways that I could understand. They showed me what it meant to have TRUE JOY and not just temporary satisfaction. They lived out what they preached and by their living testimony I saw what it meant to know Jesus as my friend and not just my Savior. They convicted me when I started to go back to my old ways. And although I didn’t listen at the time, their words stuck with me when I finally decided to seek true deliverance.
Lauren, you immediately took me under your wing. You made prison enjoyable (I know so odd). But you knew that the old life was gone and all things were made new so you shared the joy of the Lord with every lady that came through those doors. Your wisdom and knowledge made me yearn to know the Lord better. I wanted to be like you. I wanted to be able to give of Him like you did. You gave of yourself and held nothing back. Not even your coffee. (Do you remember that first cup I made with 3 scoops of coffee that had me bouncing off the walls and running around the dorm like a crazy cheerleader?) But that is just what we did. We made the best of a bad situation. Because it wasn’t bad. God was working it together for the good! Thank you for your friendship and your commitment to sharing Jesus. You will always have a special place in my heart and in my story. You are a part of HIStory!
Shelley, you too took me in as your own child. I needed someone to look up to and you filled that role for me. Your passion for the Lord lit a spark in me and the flame just kept burning because I wanted what you had. When I heard you sing, I wanted to praise the Lord too and it brought back many songs to my memory from my childhood. You also shared the joy of the Lord and everyone knew where your joy came from! Your love for God was so evident in every move that you made. I will never forget how much you wanted me to walk away from the sin I was creating in my life and how you prayed with me for deliverance. I wanted it too but wasn’t strong enough yet. You were such a loyal friend and mentor! You also have a place in my heart for eternity because you played a huge role in bringing me back to Jesus. Thank you for letting God use you for His Glory! HIStory!
I am so blessed to know you ladies. And I know that everyone at that jail would agree that y’all both were lights in that dark place. And you lived out the scripture “let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”(Philippians 2:15)