Women Hugging

I want to be a little transparent today. I have worked in the jail for about three months now, and I continue to meet people who have not experienced the type of support that so many of us have in our lives. Yet, even with support, it doesn’t mean that life is always easy.  

I invite you deeper into my story to show the need of support, which is vital for those who have been brought to Omega and impacted by the love of the volunteers and, most of all, Jesus Christ.

It has been three months since I started my training to become a full-time jail deputy.  Going into my last training phase, I was struggling in a few areas, and I knew that there was a chance of termination. As I moved ahead in the training process, I found myself unsure of what to do in certain situations.

I was concerned about not measuring up, and it weighed on me heavily. Last week, I was told that the sergeant wanted to see me. He said he needed to see improvements in the next two weeks, or he would be looking at terminating my position. 

It was in hearing those words, “terminating my position,” that I felt pressure I had never had felt before. I went to my post that morning with those lingering words in my head, knowing I had to pull it together. I just kept thinking, “I am not going to make it.”  

Things started off well enough, but it wasn’t long before the day started to crumble around me. I could feel the discouragement of my field training officer and hear it in his tone. 

One of the most important tasks as a jail deputy is making sure you are doing your rounds on time. I had one round that would have been late. However, I rushed to do the round and was able to complete it with no time to spare. I left that day feeling defeated, and I asked the Lord, “What is going on?”

The next day, I was in a different section and having doubts and reservations about my abilities. It was a busy day with attorney visits, and in my haste, I hit the wrong button for the timer, making a late round, which brought continued self-doubt.  

To be quite frank, I was heartbroken and unsure what was going on.  As I drove home, I teared up thinking, “Lord, why are you allowing this?” 

Once I had arrived at home, I could not keep it in and broke out in tears as I told my wife all that had gone wrong that day. That night, I reached out to those pillars of people I look up to and humbly asked them to please pray for me.

The next day, as I headed to work, I felt like, “OK, Lord. Let’s do this!”

It was not long into the day where, again, it seemed as if nothing had changed. I felt so defeated. So many people said I would be perfect for this job because I have a heart for people and relationships. 

I headed home, again wondering if I was going to have a job the next day. I could not keep from tearing up as I thought about it. When I walked into the house and greeted my wife, I just broke down in tears. As Susan did her best to encourage me, we both talked and prayed together. 

The following days became much better, and even my FTO noticed a huge turnaround. I know this sounds like I’m going to go into how important prayer is, and it is, but it’s also important to have people there to support you–especially when things are not going the way you hoped, planned, or pictured. 

At Omega, we know the importance of these relationships. Imagine someone trying to do the hard things on their own. The enemy is on your shoulder telling you that you don’t deserve it, that you will never add up to anything, or that no one cares for you. Omega fills those gaps and is that supportive voice. 

Omega comes up beside each intern to give that reassuring hug, the whisper in their ear letting them know they deserve something better. Omega is there to tell them they are loved, and more importantly, Jesus Christ loves them. 

Submitted by Rod 

P.S. While Rod was terminated from this job, we walked through this situation together, with others praying and encouraging us. His former boss was eager to have him return, saying Rod was an answer to their prayers. We might not understand the reason for this frustrating journey, but the love others showed us supported us and reminded us of His goodness. For that, we are grateful.