Thursday, August 22, 2013

Dangerous Women


"Aren't you afraid to be in the prison with all those dangerous women?" my neighbor asked.  "Do you have to be around any serial killers?"

The truth is that I am safer behind prison walls than I am on the highway or walking around downtown. My movements are on security video. I carry a body alarm. My husband carries a two-way radio. Armed prison guards would immediately be available if a situation was dangerous.

It's also true that the prisoners we meet in the chapel have murder, child abuse, prostitution, rape and drug crimes in their pasts.  But they look like any other group of women, except for the way they're dressed. With hands clapping and feet dancing as they sing, they sound like any other group of women praising God. Leaning in to hear my teaching, they take notes and ask questions, diligent in their study of God's Word.

They are not dangerous women because of their crimes. They are dangerous women because they are Jesus Followers, because they are becoming women after God's own heart.  They dare to be the hands and feet of Jesus in a fallen world.

Sierra, a Jesus Follower in prison, grips my hand as she tells me her story. She will die inside the prison walls. Society has rightly sentenced her to multiple life sentences. She smiles through tears of compassion for her fellow prisoners, women who live in darkness, slaves to their sins and wrong choices.

"There is so much power in God's love! I'm much more dangerous with a Bible than I ever was with a gun. Satan should be afraid. Very, Very afraid."

And Satan is indeed afraid. He knows his time is almost up. He holds no power over the truly dangerous woman, the princess-soldier who lives courage, gives wise counsel and goes about doing good. His name is defeat and the battle belongs to the Lord.

The most dangerous women in the world write Bible verses on the hearts of children. They act out Bible stories, making it fun to be in Sunday School. Pots of vegetable soup and loaves of fresh baked bread sit on their counters ready to be taken to the sick and weary. They have time to listen, to bind up the brokenhearted, to stretch loving arms to the needy and to change the course of history with their prayers.

They wage war on selfishness, divorce, abortion and cruelty. Dangerous women send notes to young wives encouraging them to love their husbands and children.  They babysit for young moms when rest becomes long overdue. They care for the widows, the orphans, the homeless. Dangerous women counsel alongside the Holy Spirit. They love people deeply from their hearts, changing the world one step at a time.

Just how dangerous are you?


2 comments:

  1. I had to come back and read it a second time. Wonderful. :-)

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  2. It's amazing how more freely others proclaim the Word when in prison versus when those of us out in the world. It reminds me that we too have been charged with the same commandment to "Go into all the world" (Mark 16:15) not just the select few places where we feel comfortable doing so. Awesome message Karen!

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