The incredible Hulk (prison stories part 4) …it doesn’t always work out how you hope it will in leadership L057

Miles was another story altogether in my leadership of our prison ministry. After coming out of prison, he moved into a friend’s house down the road. If you met Miles you would know he had had a rough life. He was one of those kind of people you would avoid on a dark night. With a scarred pock marked face and a thickset body, you had a hunch he would be a force to be reckoned with.

And he was. He was in prison for violent offences. It was said that when the police went to arrest him it took 15 – 20 officers to pin him down, and before they managed it several of them had been dispatched through the window. Rumour had it that when enraged, he displayed superhuman strength and could turn over a car single-handed.

The day came when Miles asked for help. He had given his life to Christ but knew he had ‘issues’. His anger and rages had calmed massively since becoming a Christian, but he was still aware of the volcano inside him that could potentially erupt at any moment.

Paul and I were in our 20’s. We had never prayed for someone’s deliverance before, but figured this could be our first opportunity. We were both pretty nervous. We knew it was in the bible, we knew of others who had experienced massive changes in their lives when prayed for, we were up for it. That is until we started praying.

After a few minutes of praying for him in the most authoritative way we knew how (a mixture of blagging, and using the name of Jesus at frequent intervals), something quite unnerving started to happen. It was just like the incredible hulk. It was as though his whole body started to swell, we even wondered if his shirt would pop open under the pressure! His fists clenched and his face twisted in a rage-like contortion. He seemed to get more and more agitated and we literally feared for our lives.

Suddenly it was as though a balloon had been pricked. All the stuffing went out of him and his body relaxed, his fists unclenched and a kind of peace settled over him. In a few moments he was able to talk again and explain that whatever had been tormenting him, he was now sure had gone. Thank you Jesus!

Miles continued to do well but eventually moved away from Bristol and we lost contact. We didn’t hear from him for a couple of years until one night the phone went and I heard Miles calling from a pay phone. He sounded terrified. He said ‘Nic, Nic, I’m in serious trouble and I need your help, I’m in Brighton, can you help’. Before he could say much more he gave me the number of the phone, the pips went and the call ended mid sentence. I rapidly tried to call back only to discover that the phone box didn’t receive incoming calls. I tried the operator to see if there was any way of locating the phone box; they couldn’t help. Aggggggh!

I was sure he would realise that I had been unable to call back and try again, or even reverse the charges. The minutes went by, hours went by, and eventually days and weeks went by. He never called back and I never saw or heard from him again.

What did he think – that I never bothered to call back, that I didn’t care? How did he feel – that no one cared or could help him? What happened to him – I may never know?

All I do know is that I did what I could.

In leadership not everything works out as you hope it will.

This entry was posted by rhiannon on Friday, February 3rd, 2012 at 4:20 pm and is filed under Leadership. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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