The weekend was a little crazy!
Saturday night we decided we needed pizza. My remaining teen at home, Susie, was g-chatting (online computer talk) with her sister Karen, who is at nearby Houghton college, our friend Ben, not on campus but also in Houghton, and her dad, who was having a few quiet minutes at work, where he was working the weekend. I told Susie to invite Ben and Karen over for pizza. I wasn't really serious; it's a 40 minute drive, and Karen, because of her migraine issues, does little driving, and almost none at work. But, to our surprise, they decided to come! (Ben may have had a few regrets as Karen's driving is well, um, creative... but I didn't ask!) I think it was well after 10 by the time they arrived, but we managed to save some pizza for them! :-) I love spontaneity, especially when it involves my children coming home!
After church Sunday, my husband and I and another woman from our church, Rose, went to the local jail to conduct a simple service. There are up to four units, or "pods" as they are called, that we go into. ("We" being whichever area church is scheduled. Generally, we just do two services every three months. Rose and I took the women's pod - I think only once have the women not wanted a service, and Bruce did the two men's pods. Normally, I go in with Bruce, and Rose and her husband Tom, or another couple from our church, do the other pod or pods. This was my first time leading, and I have to say I loved it! The first time I ever spoke to a group of women in a church setting was in the country of Cuba, and I was so terrorized by the word "preach," that I think I was rather ineffective. I've spoken two other times in Cuba, once with no warning (told by the Pastor after being picked up at the airport that I was preaching that night - !!), and once in Spanish. I had written that particular word in English, and had it translated into Spanish so that I could feel a closer "connection" with the women. Anyway, this was my first time since then, and while I was nervous right up to the moment we started, as soon as we started, the peace of Christ was there, and I really, really enjoyed it. My friend Rose was a blessing to work with ... she's really sensitive, and I hope I'll go in with her again.
Women in prison are like women anywhere, same mix of personalities, depth, and understanding. Same need to know God loves them, etc. A couple of the women I have met there clearly have leadership skills, and know the Word. One positive thing about being in prison: there's not much to distract one from reading his/her Bible!