October 6 – Jimmy Davis, Jr. Birthday

Jimmy Davis, Jr.8

 

Friends-in-Christ:

As conversations begin to re-start The Christian Public Servant, I ask that you consider sending a birthday card to Jimmy Davis, Jr. His birthday is October 6. Jimmy will be 48 years old.

Below is the information as to how to send that card.

Sending to Jimmy Davis, Jr.

Keep in mind, your letter is opened, inspected, read – and only then approved — by a correctional officer in the prison mailroom. Approval (and forwarding to Jimmy) is subject to interpretation by the particular correctional officer on duty. If your letter/card is not approved, it will be destroyed without you or Jimmy knowing about it. The same is true if you send him a gift.

Below are conservative instructions for writing to Jimmy Davis, Jr. Please follow them completely with an eye to each detail.

(1) In the upper-left hand corner of the envelope: place your FULL NAME and COMPLETE ADDRESS. (You may use any address — your home, your work, or your church — which ever makes you feel comfortable. But it must be a street address — not a P.O box number.) He will not get your letter/card if this information is not included.

(2) Make sure you write precisely Jimmy’s name, z-number, unit-number and address on the envelope. He will not get your letter/card if any information is incorrect or omitted. Below is what should be on your envelope:

Jimmy Davis, Jr.
Z-557 Unit N-10
Holman Correctional Facility
Holman 3700
Atmore, AL 36503-3700
USA  if you are writing from another country, naturally include “USA”

(3) No gifts can be included in the envelope. (Not that Jimmy would, but inmates can reshape items into weapons. Hence, AL DOC does not permit objects made of plastic or wood or metal.) A cardboard bible marker is OK. But anything made of plastic, wood or metal will result in the letter being rejected and destroyed – without you or Jimmy ever knowing it. Another possible gift, if you are looking for a gift, would be a book of stamps included in your card.

(4) Sending a gift is always difficult – for reasons that the gift may be rejected as a “potential weapon” through the interpretation of the DOC official opening the gift. (Knowing Jimmy is a Miami Hurricane fan, I tried to send him a Miami pennant for his birthday, and it was rejected.) The best bet is a book – but the PAPERBACK book and it must be sent directly from the publisher or a third entity (like amazon.) Jimmy does like to read!

(4) STAMPS. This is not a DOC requirement. But Alabama inmates must purchase stamps, and most cannot afford it. So Alabama prison culture encourages the writer to include 2 stamps – one possibly to respond to you and the other possibly for the inmate to write to his family. AGAIN, THIS IS NOT A REQUIREMENT and JIMMY CERTAINLY WILL NOT BE BLESSED ANY LESS BY CARDS/LETTERS THAT DO NOT CONTAIN TWO STAMPS. (And, if you write from outside the USA, do not even bother with enclosing stamps because Jimmy will not be able to use other-country stamps to write back.) And, fyi, each Friday when I send Jimmy the week’s devotionals, I usually include a book of stamps – with permission from the chaplain. I am reasonably sure that, if you are led, a book of stamps included in your letter will be accepted – and that would also be a nice Birthday or Christmas gift.

That’s about it. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at jslack0229@live.com. Thank you for all that you do in His name!

Pax Christi, Jim Slack.

 

The Christian Public Servant – “stop and pray for guidance”

Goodbye1

June 24, 2018 – Sunday

Reading

John 14:4-6 [NIV] “You know the way to the place where I am going.” Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?” Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

Reflection

The Christian Public Servant is not published on Sundays, but we do so today to make an announcement. Since 2012, the Holy Spirit has led a group of Followers to write, edit, and publish this devotional ministry. He first led Jim Slack down this path, along with two Regent University graduate assistants – Chris Meconnahey and Jonathan Lantz. The group expanded to include two other former Regent students – Bill Dudley and Stephen Pincus. Others would come to help in His ministry: Kevin J. Cooney, Tammy Peavy, and Greg Smith. Naturally, the Lord also brought many worldwide Followers to write workplace devotionals that touched thousands on six continents. This group included a man on death row – Jimmy Davis, Jr. – who wrote every Friday devotional since 2013.

But now we take a sabbatical. Now we stop and pray for guidance. Are we doing what God wants? Or, has this ministry simply become a comfort zone? Will others pick up this ministry if we are called elsewhere? What does God want of each of us? Where does He want to take us?

God is moving in so many wonderful ways! His way for me may include helping Jimmy Davis, Jr. write a book of devotionals, Death Row Devotionals. He may lead you and me into uncharted waters – including ministries focusing on family, church, or our health.

And so, we stop and pray for guidance. The editors, past and present, ask that you do the same. Where does God want you? What does He need of you? In time, it may be clear He wants The Christian Public Servant to resume. If that is the case, please follow Him and contribute by writing and reading! But if it is not His will, then we all must follow down whatever path He takes us – individually and as part of the Body of Christ.

So please do not “unfollow” The Christian Public Servant. Keep this ministry on your blog and on your Facebook. We simply ask you to join us: stop and pray for guidance.

God bless you for doing all you do in His name. Thank you for blessing me so much since 2012.

Prayer

Father God, thank You for Your guidance. In Your son’s name, I pray. Amen.

On behalf of all editors, writers, and readers,
Jim Slack
jslack0229@live.com

The Christian Public Servant – “in a different spirit”

Jimm & Friends2

June 22, 2018 – Friday

Reading

Matthew 5:9 [MSG] You’re blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of competing or fighting. That’s when you discover who you really are, and your place in God’s family.

Reflection

Where I live and work, sometimes the “group spirit” permits people to do ugly things to themselves and others. Arguments. Fights. Death. Even suicide. The group spirit sometimes sees the ugliness as fun to watch, and so nobody prevents the fight or shows how to love and cooperate. Such “fun” is mistaken for a “blessing.”

When we are in that group spirit, it is easy to forget what Jesus said. We are only blessed when we show others how to cooperate. The blessing is not watching two brothers fight. The blessing is being placed in God’s family.

So I took it upon myself to thrive in a different spirit – a spirit of God and not a spirit of group. Part of my job each day is to show others how to cooperate, and not fight.

You do not live where I live, and you do not work where I work. But is your situation so different than mine? Do you not see coworkers compete when they could get more done by cooperating? Is there a group spirit that looks to a fight for entertainment?

Today at work, discover who you really are – or who you really should be. Go to work in a different spirit – a spirit of God. Find your place in His family at your workplace.

Prayer

Father, in the name of Jesus, I pray. Thank You for continuing to pour Your peace into my heart so I can help bring unity where there is division. Amen.

Jimmy Davis, Jr.
Z-557 Unit N-10
death row
Holman Correctional Facility
Alabama Department of Corrections
Atmore, Alabama USA

The Christian Public Servant – “just a few simple words”

resting with God1

June 21, 2018 – Thursday

Reading

John 13:34(b) [NLT] Love each other.

1 Corinthians 14:19 [NLT] But in a church meeting I would rather speak five understandable words to help others than ten thousand words in an unknown language.

Reflection

I stood in walkway as parents signed in their toddlers for camp. There, a dad took some time to whisper something in his daughter’s ear. As he walked off, never looking back, she started crying and could not stop. The camp staff tried to calm her but to no avail. One tried to give her a cup of juice. Another tried a piece of candy. Still another tried a teddy bear. Finally, I picked her up, and whispered, “It’s ok, I will love you just like mommy and daddy.” She stopped crying instantly, laid her head on my shoulder, and put her arms around my neck.

When her daddy picked her up, I shared what had happened, and he was almost in tears. You see, last week his wife – the toddler’s mommy – died. This morning, the daddy whispered a lot, but nothing like what mommy whispered. That made the little girl cry. But my whisper, saying just a few simple words, was similar enough to what her mommy would whisper. And that calmed this sweet girl.

Scripture reminds us, just a few simple words can have a meaningful impact on others. This is how Jesus taught us to do His work in our lives.

In your workplace, you may not have toddlers and daddies crying. But remember this: your words can either break a person or give them what is needed. Be careful with your words. Know just a few simple words can do the trick.

Today at work, select your words wisely knowing what Christ would do.

Prayer

Dear Heavenly Father, write on my heart the words needed to do Your work in my workplace. Let my words lead someone to You. In Jesus name, I pray. Amen.

De’Erika D. Blackmon
Patient Representative/Business Office
St. Dominic’s Hospital
Jackson, Mississippi USA
and MPA Candidate
Belhaven University
Jackson, Mississippi USA

The Christian Public Servant – “consider other workers highly”

 

respect1

June 20, 2018 – Wednesday

Reading

Romans 12:3-5 [NASB] For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith. For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.

Reflection

Over lunch, a coworker complained about another workmate. She comes and goes as she pleases, and she does not seem to work at all. Unfortunately, I heard this complaint one too many times and didn’t want to hear anymore. I reminded my friend that the complaint may be unfounded. Perhaps she does much more than meets the eye.

The Holy Scripture says we should not think of ourselves more highly than others. It teaches, just as you and I have many parts of our bodies, so is the body of Christ.

Do you complain about coworkers who do not seem to put in a fair share? You need to realize they are part of the body and may well fit into the big picture. God put them here for a purpose, and management knows why they are paid. You would be more productive to consider other workers highly, and you will be surprised what you can learn from them.

At work today, consider other workers highly – as an important member of the team. Know the Lord places them in the organization for a purpose. Know the Lord does the same with you.

Prayer

Lord, today at work, help me be humble and consider other workers highly – their roles, not only at work, but in the world. Help me realize I am also an important member in the body in Christ at work. In Your name, I pray. Amen.

Khambile M. Msonthi-Perry
MPA candidate
Belhaven University
Jackson, Mississippi USA

The Christian Public Servant – “just around the corner”

 

right aound the corner1

June 19, 2018 – Tuesday

Reading

Psalm 27:13 [NIV] I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.

Reflection

When will I get a promotion? The question was replaying in my head yesterday on my way to work. After years of working hard in this department, you’d think they would look my way for some sort of promotion or a big raise. Apparently, that is not the case. It felt like I was in prison, and there was no parole. Before I got out of the car, my confidence level was so low and my motivation followed suit.

But when I got inside the building, something was different. My boss rushed over and assigned me a task usually reserved for a supervisor. Telling me the task must be done by the end of the day, I began to work on it right away. And it was then my confidence began to increase because I felt that God sent him to test my abilities. I mean, how bad can it be? My supervisor needed me to do something out of the ordinary!

Scripture reminds us to be self-assured. For you and I will surely see the blessings God has for us on this earth. Even when all our hope, motivation, and confidence is gone, God has not forgotten us. Our blessings are on the way – they are just around the corner!

Well, later that day, I completed the task. As I entered my supervisor’s office to turn in the assignment, there were balloons and congratulation signs everywhere. It turned out to be my promotion party. God had not forgotten about me!

Today at work, stay confident in your role and in God. For your blessing could be just around the corner. It may take days, months, or years for your next “big break.” But stay aware of the power of God. Continue to work hard and trust in His abilities.

Yes, your work blessings are just around the corner!

Prayer

Father God, help me remain confident in You. Shield my heart and mind from any negativity that may come my way. When in doubt, remind me of Your power – that I will inherent the blessings You have for me. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Courtland Green
Accountant/Auditor III
Mississippi Department of Human Services
Jackson, Mississippi, USA
and MPA Candidate
Belhaven University
Jackson, Mississippi USA