Miles and Walls
One day I stepped into our TUMI (The Urban Ministry Institute) classroom to check on a student who was studying and heard her on the phone. When she finished, she told me, “I was talking to my son! He was doing his TUMI homework and I told him I’m doing my homework, too!” Her son Devon* is in a prison several hours away and they are both enrolled in TUMI. It was an answer to this mom’s prayer!
We asked Devon to tell of God’s work in his life. He wrote, while his mother prayed for the Lord to intervene, he experienced a revival of his faith in county jail. Even though there was a TUMI class in his housing area, he had refused opportunity to apply. In his words, “My energy was sapped, no praising, no joy, and no more peace.”
One day, the TUMI facilitator held class in a common area, and Devon overheard the video from his cell, “…it was (Dr. Davis’) greeting ‘welcome in the strong name of Jesus’ that I sprang up from my rack and went to the door. I stood there listening through the whole class, glued to that TV screen and intrigued by his teaching. I became hungry, not for food but for the Word of God.
“At the conclusion of the class, I knocked on my cell door to get the instructor’s attention. I told her my name and she responded with, ‘We have all been praying for you.’ I was thinking to myself, how does she even know who I am? She then let me know that my mother was involved with TUMI on the other side of those physical walls, praying and chipping away at my mental walls along with others from TUMI.”
He was accepted into the class, and when he was transferred from county jail to prison, the coordinator of that TUMI site helped him continue. Although they are divided by miles and walls, this mother and son are united by their common goals of service in the Kingdom of Christ and advancement of the Church.
Devon concluded, “I am and will forever be humbled to know that God doesn’t build walls and that it is only by his power and might that walls are torn down.”
*Name changed for privacy.