A Picture of Grace
(Listen by clicking the white play button at the top of this post. You can read the transcript of the story below.)
Hi, my name is Delton. And I hate to say this out loud, but I’m a middle-aged man, husband of a dear woman for 28 years, and parent of three children, two adult children and one still in high school. I was raised as a Latin American, my dad is a Cuban immigrant. My mom was born here in the States.
So I have a very interesting worldview. But I was raised as a follower of Christ. And I’m grateful for that. And now I have a long, long standing tradition and our family on both sides of Christ followers and a deep legacy of a Christ-honoring, Christ-following family.
So I spent 47 months in federal prison. I don’t have to tell you that going to prison is not an easy thing to do. But somehow, from the very beginning, we knew that God was at work. We knew that God had a bigger story in mind, and we were on the hunt for it. And so we took things a little more seriously. We were trying to be more attentive to what was going on, because we kept–it was like that sense of anticipation. We know something’s gonna happen, we’re waiting for it to happen. And it’s amazing what you notice when you live like that.
My first day there–that that memory is very vivid for me. I’d just taken a tour with the counselor, kind of introduced me to the place, show me around, show me where my bunk is. And I came in and met a guy named Thad, and he came up to me almost immediately after I got there, walked right up to me, big, larger-than-life kind of a guy–6-4, 6-5, maybe taller. Very fit, very–he’d played safety at Southern Miss. Big guy, big strong guy, but a smile that was just contagious. And he came up with his big eyes and big smile and said, greeted me, “I’m Thad.” He said, “You’re a Christian, aren’t’ you?” But I thought wow, of, of all the people that could have approached me. This guy walked right up to me and I guess could see the Holy Spirit, and was discerning enough to see that. And I said, “Well, yeah.”
“I knew it.” He said. He said, “we need to, you know, we need to talk, you know, we’re going to be friends.” I was like, okay. And he said, “So, meet me tonight, after count, the count at 9:30. Meet me in the last shower stall for prayer time.”