Tuesday, October 21, 2014

About Tom

Many of us think of ourselves as being better than an inmate. But in God's eyes, we're not different at all. 

Many inmates that I meet, are looking for REAL, lasting PEACE! We all are. My prayer is that you have already found it. But for those who haven't, I want you to know that Jesus died for your sins. I want everyone to have the opportunity to make that "choice", to live eternally or to die forever, in a place of eternal torment. But I exist to tell you it doesn't have to be that way. There is HOPE!

I have not been locked up in a cell but I have been imprisoned by my body and earlier in my life I was imprisoned by sin. But no matter how impossible a situation looks, there is nothing that the Lord can't handle! If He can cure a disease, cause me to walk again and bring me back from death several times, He can take care of the situation you're going through! 

Why do I feel connected to the inmate? In my story, God has allowed me to see many similarities.

When I was 18 years old, I was given only a short time to live. Blood tests revealed that I had a life-threatening disease. It was Leukemia and the doctor said there was no hope!

It was 1984, a time when the medical treatment for leukemia was not as advanced as it is today. And even though there was a life-saving bone marrow transplant, it would cost well over $100,000 just to get started. The money would have to be paid before I could receive treatment, but that wasn't all. An unlikely bone marrow match was also needed and a marrow bank did not yet exist.

My journey was not easy. I did receive the transplant, but during the process I went into a blast crisis and came even closer to death. I found myself totally paralyzed, my lungs were collapsed, I was on life support and later, confined to a wheel chair, for eight years. All my joints contracted and left me imprisoned in my own body. It felt like I was stuck inside a concrete statue. I had been through a battle but I was determined not to lose the war. Years later, I still experience many complications from my illness but God gives me strength to do what He asks me to do. I may experience walls of limitations but in Jesus I am free! And no one can take that away from me.

I have a burden to go and tell people what Jesus Christ has done for me and what I know He will do for others when they put their trust in Him. I have never been in prison or a slave to alcohol or drugs but I have something in common with a lot of people. I felt hopeless. There is good news though. Hope can be found when you ask the Lord to take control of your life. The hope I have is not just this temporary life but eternal life only found in Him! Now I'm walking, talking, singing and bringing His message of hope and peace to others!

Today I experience complete VICTORY! The leukemia is totally cured and the paralysis is gone. If I can help and encourage someone else, everything I’ve been through has been worth it all!

Recently, I encountered a new battle. I was diagnosed with Stage 4 of Chronic Kidney disease. My life is threatened with kidney failure. Doctors' expect within 2 years, I will be on dialysis. Then the doctor. says my life expectancy is about 3 to 5 more years. But I have news for him. Only God knows when my life on earth will end! 

Recently, God has opened doors for me to go into Penobscot County Jail and Maine State Prison. I've also forged a relationship with Ken Hawley of Straight Ahead Ministries in Maine. My prayer is that God will use this to open more opportunities for me. I thank Him for all of the opportunities He gives me to tell others about Him!" 

Contact Tom to hear him share how God has worked in his life!

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