Love Your Enemies?

Posted: June 29, 2012 in Jesus, Masculinity, Religion
Tags: , , ,

Matthew 5:44 has always rattled my cage. Let me tell you why. For 24 years I worked behind the walls of three different prisons in California. During this time I was surrounded by hundreds of inmates. Inmates that didn’t like me. Inmates that want to attack me or inmates that wanted just to wreck my day. To be fair, not all inmates were that way though. So it’s safe to assume that I was there enemy and they were mine. How was I supposed to love somebody that I was tackling or love somebody that was trying to stab me.

Well, it dawned on me that I was loving my enemies, but not in the way that the typical Christian, who follows a typical official church script believes. So if anybody is an expert at loving their enemies, I surely had become the expert.

Well as a prison guard, I learned to listen to the Holy Spirit and apply mentoring to inmates that I felt would receive the wisdom I had to offer. Sometimes this wisdom or guidance would come out within a day or two after being in a physical confrontation with the same individual. Many times after being in a fight with one of these guys we both learn to respect each other and from that a relationship will develop at least a relationship in as much that could be developed within the confines of understanding that he was the inmate and I was the guard.

From there a dialogue started, and if the Holy Spirit blessed it then the it was pretty easy to tell. If not, maybe somewhere down the road it would be blessed. Anyhow, it didn’t matter, it was God who initiates salvation and is responsible for the ears to be opened not me. I am just His servant.

Doug Burrell, The Creators Clay

  1. Mike Daley says:

    For me this struggle was always compounded by the state rules against fraternizing with inmates. I was careful to keep all conversions professional, and non-personal, pointing them to mentors I trusted to teach them. (volunteer chaplains) But most helpful after a hard shift was to go home and pray for them and their families, no rules against that. It always helped me lift the hatred off my shoulders, and walk back through the gates the next day with an improved perspective.

    • prophetshrek says:

      Hi Mike, good to hear from you. I love following you on facebook and see all the places your traveling. I understood this struggle your talking about. It was a tight rope to walk wasn’t it?

      Good journey on your travels my brother

  2. Being a prison guard surely is one of the toughest jobs on the planet. So nice to know there are Christians in those dark places who bring the light of Jesus to the broken men and women within them. God bless you!

    • prophetshrek says:

      Thank you Morven. I cant say that was my main goal while I was working. However when the Holy Spirit did lead I followed. I believe He gave me lot’s of valuable experience to be able to know how to deal with abusers. Thanks again!

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