This isn’t what I signed up for. I just wanted to be a helper—with a job that sounded safe, with someone else in charge. A few months ago, when I expressed my desire to work with Prison Fellowship, I wanted to be helpful but didn’t know exactly what I’d be doing. The last thing I expected was to be leading a Bible study every week. God showed me He had other plans.
My friend Kim and I meet every Sunday afternoon to co-teach a Bible study to the lockdown women’s section of Clackamas County Jail in Oregon. I actually go into the cell with the ladies and sit with them at a table. We have anywhere between two and ten women, often different ones each week as some are moved to prison or get to go home and new ones come in. I have seen some of the same women get out of jail only to come back again.
Our weekly lessons are always relevant to how we are to live our lives for God, how He cares about us, and how He is always there for us. Most of the women have been abused in some way, and it is hard for them to believe God cares about them. Kim and I show them God’s love by just being there to listen and pray with them. They look forward to our visits and have had some really good questions about God’s Word.
I know that if I had been the one to choose what ministry I was going to be doing, this would not have been it. Yet God knew where I should be. I have no fear and feel such love and compassion for these women who have made poor choices with their lives. Now I would not choose be doing anything else.