A letter from prison

“Ben,” the African asylum-seeker whom we are sponsoring, has now been in detention in New Mexico for four months, waiting to be paroled or bonded out. As I’ve written before, he is part a cohort of a dozen or so Africans who came through Mexico and arrived at the border at about the same time—and the last one still in deteIMG_4068ntion.

We’ve been talking regularly on the phone these four months. He calls us Mom and Dad in the African way (he’s actually about the age of our children). We’ve written letters, too. Sometimes it’s easier for Ben, who is a journalist, to express his feelings in writing. The one that came yesterday struck me profoundly. He gave me permission to share it.


Hi Mom,

How are you Mom and Dad. It gives me great joy to know that all is well and you are enjoying good health. I’m also fine and doing my time in Otero County Processing Center. I’m quite aware that moments of doubt and questions are normal and legitimate as one discovers his/her personal path of faith but I’m holding myself together till the end of my stay in New Mexico.

Mom, in Paul’s letter to the believers in Rome, he expressed his complete confidence in the reality of God’s love regardless of circumstances. He asked with boldness, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” If God gave his very own Son, to save us, then he will provide whatever we need. Paul had lots of unbearable situations that he himself faced, but it didn’t imply that Christ’s love would stop bad things from happening. But Paul said that “in all these things we go through, we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”

Sometimes it’s hard to wait and wait, but I trust in God and his deliverance. I kindly ask him to give me patience, allowing his greatness and glory to be evident in my life. No matter how unpleasant life may seem now, I still trust in his great promises.

Mom, I thank you and Dad for my new phone and the money you sent a couple of days back. I am hopeful that I will get them [when I am released]. I smiled with tears of joy when you mentioned my gifts because I remembered gifts I had given my beloved ones in the past, like the small phone I bought my younger sister Suzan on her birthday in 2015. I realized how years later God was still teaching me to give more unselfishly. Giving is something we grow into and understand that all we have is given to us from God. I kindly ask God to help me and my friends extend that loving and caring hand you have showed us to others with the unwavering grace that comes only from God’s spirit.

Send my love to everyone at church and in [your] community. I wish you well in all your endeavours.

Yours sincerely,






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