We’ve seen a lot of answered prayer inside the jail lately. Often the answered prayers are bold prayers, or prayers for the impossible. To witness this happening pulls one closer to Christ. Let me give you another example of this from the jail.

Last week Monday I was on the medical wing of the jail. There were quite a few women on the wing. As a rule with Kalamazoo Jail Ministry, we generally don’t mix up the genders much during ministry: men minister to men, women to women. (With inmates that refer to themselves as transgender or the like, both men and women of the KJM team will minister to them.) However, sometimes in the medical wing, these aspects of ministry can get changed-around a bit, because, for example, if I am the only KJM mission worker in the medical wing, and a female is asking me to please pray, because she told you she lost the will to live, for example, that is not a situation you say “no” to. Rather, you drop what you are doing and pray with that inmate, looking straight at Jesus. Last Monday was one of these instances.

I was talking to one inmate on one side of the hall. A female inmate across the hall appeared to be trying to get my attention. From what I could gather of her situation, and from the medical care she was receiving, I assumed she was in a spot where she would have to be in the medical wing a long time.

“Chaplain please pray for me!” This female inmate said, from across the hall. There was some fear I could hear in the way she spoke.

And then of all the things she could have said, she says this:

“Please pray that I get out of this room and go somewhere else in the jail.”

I am thinking, really! She’s asking me to pray for the impossible?! I was literally just thinking to myself the following:

“She can’t get out of that room, in her condition, I hope she does not ask me to pray for her to get out of that room.”

And then a moment later, she asks me to pray for her to get out of the room, and ASAP. It was almost like I knew she was going to ask it.

Then GOD put a flash in my mind, of remembering the many impossible prayers that were answered just in the past few weeks inside the jail.

“Wow,” I thought.

So, I turned around to her.

“Sister, me and my friend here,” referring to the inmate that I was talking to, “will pray for you in a few moments. We will pray for you to get out of that room. That you will be taken to a different place in the jail, as you asked.”

So me and this fella in the medical wing prayed. Wow! It was good prayer! The prayer felt like GOD‘s radiance. That sort of prayer where you can just feel GOD’s light all around. We connected to Jesus, and asked him to help our sister across the hall get well and be able to be moved.

After the prayer, I said to this fellow I’d been talking to:

“With men that would be impossible; but with GOD all things are possible” (see Matt 19:26).

It was one of those times where you just knew the prayer was going to get answered–somehow–where GOD floods you with assurance.

So, I moved on to other parts of the jail.

There were a lot of intense, bold, and some would say, mountain-moving prayers like this during the first half of last week in the jail ministry, all around the jail. And there were so many of these sorts of prayers that it caused me to slow down by midweek last week, and stop and do this prayer to the LORD:

“LORD Jesus Christ, there have been so many prayers, please answer them all! I don’t want the inmates to think that you’re not there, or to lose hope. So, please show them what happens when we believe! When we cry out to you in our hearts! I want them to be have their minds blown, to be amazed. Please Jesus Christ! I beg you for this.”

While I was doing that prayer, the LORD again had flash through my mind, of the memories of that prayer Monday, in the medical wing, for the female inmate. Through the week, the prayer in the medical wing, and a few other of these sorts of bold prayers, were flashing through my mind. Then Friday comes (five days ago), and that prayer for that woman was still delicately flitting across my mind, here and there. I know, from times in the past, that when that happens, keep watch, the LORD is working, and revealing. Later in the day, I was on the upper level of the jail. I was going past a holding cell where inmates use the phone, and there, in that holding cell, was this female inmate from the medical wing. I looked at her and did a literal double-take. It was almost like I was seeing a ghost, for lack of better words.

“Sister, is that you?” I said?

“Yeah, I git out!” she said, with a big-old-smile.

And here is what is even more interesting: I almost never see female inmates in the jail. I can go a month and maybe only see one female inmate, and that might be from 30 feet away, as they are being moved from one area to another, for example. So, to see this one, specific inmate, right then at that exact moment, right after that GOD-illuminated prayer… I thought to myself: of all the things that could happen, I see this specific woman at this specific time, after that specific prayer. GOD is amazing! He’s acting everywhere.

“What do you mean you got out?” I replied.

“They let me out,” she said.

“Sister, the LORD let you out!” I said. “We just prayed on Monday! And you’re already out? This is a miracle!”

“Oh I know it Him,” she said. “He my Maker!”


Lead Chaplain, Founder, Kalamazoo Jail Ministry