This morning I had my annual eye check appointment. After a slight change in prescription I found myself sitting with a wonderful lady who helped me select some new frames and find the right style and price for me.
The helper noticed the name of our ministry on my shirt. She took a moment to ask, “What is Chains of Grace?”
I have my mission .down pretty well. I was able to quickly reply, “Chains of Grace is a Christ centered ministry that provides reentry services and supervision to men and women coming out of incarceration.”
Please know we were sitting among all the trappings of middle class medical services specialized for the eyes. There was noting to hint anyone in the room had any association with crime or criminals.
The young woman sat back heavily in her chair. She sighed noticeably.
“I am so glad someone does that kind of work,” she answered, when she had regained herself.
“My husband,” she continued, “is a convicted felon. He had so many problems when he came home. I really thought we were going to lose him.”
“What helped him the most?’ I asked.
“We tried everything. Finally, we went to a church. He told the pastor about his issues. The pastor and the church just welcomed us and loved on us. That is what made the difference,” she finished.
“We believe that same thing,” I told her. “God uses a loving church family to welcome men and women back into the world.”
I have met very few families who do not have a family member or a close friend in the penal system. Certainly, some people just have to go to jail to get right. There are much worse things than going to prison.
At Chains of Grace, we want men and women to come out of prison, if at all possible. In this space for all of 2019, I will show you ways to help us help the people who will be your neighbors sometime soon.
Go to www.chainsofgrace.org to learn more about us.