It's obvious if you've read many of my post that you know that God has given me a heart for those imprisoned. I can't help it. I didn't choose it. I didn't go looking for it. I didn't ask for it. It chose me. It gripped my heart. It's just part of who I am. Evidently part of what I was made for. Part of my purpose. Part of God's plan. Part of how I was created. Part of God's will. It's what my feelings bleed for. They've captivated my thoughts. I cannot help but think about them and want to help. It's my passion. A "compassion" if you will... because it's a passion that has to go, has to "come" to them. My love compels me. Or rather, God's love in me compels me and moves me to do so.
So... it's in the prisons I go.
Granted, it's not for everybody. None of us all called to do everything. My calling isn't yours. And your calling isn't mine. And aren't we glad, because there's so much work everywhere to get done.
Here's my problem.
I didn't mentioned it to the person I was talking to. They brought it up. They knew that I went. And here's what they said, "You know, in the bible when we are told to visit those in prison it was talking about those imprisoned for preaching the gospel."
The statement stunned me. To be honest, it hurt. It startled. It saddened. It devastated. It was a Christian that said it. I didn't see it coming. I love the one that was saying. I highly esteem them. I respect them greatly! I guess that's what hurt me so much. And all that I could answer back was, "But Jesus came to set the captives free, to release the prisoners from their darkness" (Is 61:1).
Jesus said, "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick..." Mark 2:17.
Seriously, are our hearts so blind and hardened that we miss that? I can't tell you how many times I have been discouraged from going. I can't tell you how many times people, in essence, have told me they're hopeless. I can't tell you how many times that I've been told that they're "cons" and they will never be anything different. I can't tell you how many times that I've been told that they are "the scum of the earth" and aren't worth the trouble. I can't tell you how many times I've been told that there is "no rehabilitating"....
And sadly, it's "Christians" that are the ones telling me.
Father, forgive them. They know not what they say. Change our hearts. Change our attitudes. Heal our blind eyes from their darkness. Transform our minds and our thinking. And fill our hating hearts with Your love.