When Larry arrived in prison, he was so damaged and scarred that he felt as if his life was beyond repair.
Illegal drug use had left him a shell of a man. His marriage had failed. And after multiple charges, he faced the prospect of life behind bars.
Larry knew that he needed to change. But he also knew that he was powerless to change on his own. Larry surrendered his life to Jesus — because it was his only chance!
Eager to grow closer to the Lord, he enrolled in Prison Fellowship’s spiritual development classes. It was in prison, through these classes, that Larry came to realize he had been given unique talents and abilities. With God’s provision, he was able to improve both his life skills and his character.
But that was only the beginning.
Larry learned how to create a business plan and write a resume while in prison. He was able to enroll in journalism, communication, public speaking, and leadership classes. After his release in 2012, Prison Fellowship volunteers helped connect Larry with a church and a Christian reentry center — the launching point for him to begin a successful life on the outside.
On his seventh day out of prison, Larry found himself sitting in an interview with the owner of a scrap yard. It wasn’t his ideal job. But he knew that if given the chance, he could show himself to be a hard worker. The owner saw something different about Larry and decided to offer him the position.
Using the skills he learned behind bars, Larry excelled at his job. Within 90 days, he received five raises and was promoted to yard foreman. This new position has even allowed him to hire 19 other ex-prisoners.
Larry regularly keeps in touch with the Prison Fellowship mentor he received while in prison. They speak to each other daily and share a meal together after church on Sundays.
Ministering With Impact
In Larry’s state, a study showed that more than four out of five prisoners who successfully completed one of Prison Fellowship’s intensive reentry programs haven’t returned to prison since release.
That’s a stark contrast with the 40 percent of prisoners nationwide who will be sent back to prison within three years of their release.
You can be part of what God is doing to redeem broken men and women as Prison Fellowship works to prepare prisoners like Larry for a successful life outside the walls. Learn how you can help provide life-skills training, mentoring, and solid Bible teaching at prisonfellowship.org.
Edited by Rebekah L. Stratton