Journal Entries

Portions of Craig’s journal which he began on Day 37 of his incarceration at a county detention center.

Entry #1. 4/27/2013. Day 37

So I got this idea in my mind last night to start journaling. So here I am, writing my first entry. Day was good; had 2 unexpected visitors tonight and had a good 30-minute talk through a glass window. Went to a church service today and Bible Study which helped to break up the long day. Started working out today. I’ll be sore tomorrow. I introduced my cellmate to memorizing Bible verses today, and he just asked for the sheets to look over. Had a good devo/prayer circle tonight, working on someone to come join us. Day went faster than normal, probably because we got to watch “4 Brothers” while our cell block was being deep cleaned. All I can do, Lord, is give you all of me for as long as a have left. I will do what you want, go where you send me, obey you regardless.

Entry #5. 5/1/2013. Day 41

Wow! May 1. Happy May Day! Brings back memories in Hawaii and each class had to create their own Hula Dance. Good memories! I struggled a little bit today and then came to peace when I read “The Testament” by John Grisham – the part when Nate started attending church and was dropping all of his baggage for God. Reminds me of “The Skit Guys” YouTube video. A new guy came to prayer circle tonight. God is good. Romans 8:38-39 Nothing can separate us from God’s love.

Entry #8. 5/4/2013. Day 44

Not an eventful day today, but I guess no days really are. There’s just so much on my mind. But I’m trusting God!!! I need you, God. Please rescue me from this place. I want to be with my family. Help me, God! Someone came up and thanked me for the Intro Bible Study guides I gave him that my aunt sent me. I’m gonna continue to do Your work, Lord. You have a plan. Thank you!

Entry #11. 5/7/2013. Day 47

I gotta talk to Q tomorrow about some stuff he said about getting to heaven. There are some non-believers in our group and he made it sound like everyone is going to heaven if they want. He doesn’t like when people disagree with him. I hope it goes OK. Listening to Cards/Cubs game now and Cards are losing 2-1 in 8th. I get to talk to Mom and Dad tomorrow. Can’t wait! Another day closer to freedom.

A Slow Fade

Big_cross_in_the_fog_by_slavencrniJanuary 19.2012. A day I’ll never forget. A day I cried out and submitted my whole heart and life to God. I had just arrived back at my home from a 3-day stint in the county jail. My mind was racing, wondering what just happened. I could not believe that my life was going in this direction. I thought I was doing all the right things…..I accepted Christ into my heart at a young age, had a job where I shared the love of Christ, had many loving and caring family and friends, faithfully attended church, volunteered countless numbers of hours in the church and community, and so much more. But yet, my eyes were pouring out tears while standing over my kitchen sink, wondering, “Why did this happen? How did I get myself into this? What do you want from me, God? You definitely have my attention now. Speak to me. I need you more than ever, God.”

What I realized that night was that my faith life was slowly fading, bit by bit. I was not where God wanted me to be in this stage of life. He wanted more out of me. And it took a dramatic life changing event with poor choices I made to get my attention.

God definitely spoke to me that night. He pulled the strings on my life and said, “Easy there, Craig. You’re straying too far from my ways again. I’m drawing you back to Me once and for all to get you where you should be. It’ll be a tough and long road ahead of you, but with Me by your side, all things will work out for good.”

Oh, I thought I was living my life for God. It’s just that I had my moments where I would wander too far off His path, and He would have to pull me back time and time again. He was tired of playing tug of war. God wanted way more out of me than what I was giving Him. He wanted me to live for Him 24/7. He wanted all of Me. Being a Christian is not about going to church every Sunday or doing all the things I was doing for Him. It was about a relationship with Him. He wanted me to stop my sinful ways. He wanted me to drop everything and follow Him. That night I asked God to forgive me and told Him that I completely believed that His son Jesus came to earth to die on a cross for my sins. And that Thursday, my life changed forever.