July 14, 2017 – Friday
1 John 4:19 [NIV] We love because he first loved us.
There is this new brother down the row. Quiet. Shy. Practically built a wall around him. But one day last month, I was the “runner” for the row – you know, the brother who gets the celled brothers ice cubes and water. Well, this new brother stopped me outside his cell, and he started to talk. After a few minutes of idle chatting, he started to talk about himself: how bad he was, the murder that got him to death row, and how his family and gang on the outside choose not to write or answer his phone calls. And so we talked for quite a while, with the other brothers being patient in receiving their requests as they knew what was happening. I told him that everything he has done in the past is not what he can do today. I said, “our Lord loved you first, and now you must go and love others in return.”
I had to make my rounds, as other brothers were waiting, but I told this brother I’d be back. And when I did come back, I surprised him with some chips and a cold drink of water. We talked some more, but this time about me – the bad things I did in my free-world life and how Christ took a hold of me once I got here on Life Row and empowered me with His love. Then this brother said, “Jimmy, I love you.” I told him I loved him, and he put his hands through the bars so that he could hug me. And I hugged him back. When I stepped from his cell gate, I could see Jesus’ love in his smile. This brother had learned to love others in return.
I don’t know much about where you live and work, but it can’t be too much different than where I am. Is it? Here, men do not smile much. They certainly don’t hug. And they don’t show love. Is that not the case at your workplace?
But as Christians, we must love others in return for the love Jesus first gave us.
As you go to work today, remember Jesus first loved you. You must love others in return. And your workplace is a good place to start!
Father, in the name of Jesus, I pray. Thank You for Your love. Now I need to pass it on! Amen.
Jimmy Davis, Jr.
Z-557 Unit N-10
Holman Correctional Facility
Alabama Department of Corrections
Atmore, Alabama USA