Kim (A Prisoner on the Outside, but not on the Inside)

  1. She works and makes $3.45 a day as a layout engineer using CAD software.  She designs office space for municipalities and has even done some dorm layouts for the University of Maryland.

  2. She has to buy all her own toiletries.  Tide Pods are $6.99 for a small box.

  3. She lives in the most privileged section of the prison because of good behavior.  She has a TV (with an old antenna) and a DVD player.  She has seen reruns of the TV shows where she is featured countless times.

  4. She has a pet cat named Lynn.  The local shelter has partnered with the prison to allow inmates to care for a dog or a cat which goes with them to freedom if and when they get out.  (litter box right in the cell)

  5. She started a book club (that has now spread to three or four other prisons) where college professors come and teach.  Her favorite book is Life of Pi.

  6. She speaks to victims' families and allows them to ask her any question.  This is designed to bring understanding and the potential for forgiveness and healing. The story of her heart was even more fascinating.  She has come to the place where she has taken ownership, admitted guilt, and sought ways to contact her husband's family to ask for forgiveness.  She has hope that (and it would truly be a miracle) one day there might be some kind of healing between them. I was confused and amazed as to how she had gotten to this place.  How had she worked through all the shame and guilt.  I mean this is big stuff.  Like huge stuff.  Way out of my league stuff.  Why is she okay?  And not just okay.  She actually used the word "blessed."  I received a little peak at part of the answer. We spoke about how God's heart is NOT for retribution, but for restoration.  His desire is not to punish her, but to redeem her (or any of us for that matter).  She knows this life-changing truth at the core of her soul.  He loves her no matter what she has done. He is restoring her.  Not to freedom on the outside (both literally and figuratively), but to freedom on the inside (both literally and figuratively).  WOW!  Just WOW! It all hit me like a tons of bricks:  this is why Jesus came.  Freedom for the prisoners (Luke 4:18).  Not the outside kind, but the inside kind.  And no circumstance or failure (even premeditated murder) or brokenness is too much for Him.  He doesn't discard anyone.  He never sees anyone as beyond hope.  He can free anyone, even normal me.  This is His main business. I prayed very differently on Thursday night.  This time it was not that I would bring healing to Kim, but thanksgiving that she had brought a little more healing, freedom and restoration that day to little old me!  Surprise! (By the way, I received her permission to share all of this.)

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READ MORE ABOUT KIM HERE at these other links: This one is GOLD!  A Letter from Prison and a Journey to Freedom Dear Kim (my letter to prison about what might really matter)

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