By Dianne E. Butts
According to the web site of the Colorado State Patrol, “Crashes involving alcohol and drugs have twice the number of injuries and deaths as crashes without alcohol and drug involvement. They usually involve higher speeds, and often both the driver and any passengers are not wearing seatbelts.” What if you were the cause of a DUI (Driving Under the Influence of alcohol) crash? What if you killed someone? Nobody could find God in prison after a deadly DUI crash. Right?
Meet Kenneth Jones. He had landed his dream job—a sports anchor on a TV station in Macon, Georgia. He was married and he and his wife moved to Macon for him to pursue this dream job.
Then in August 2003, after drinking until five in the morning, Kenneth drove a friend home. Instead of spending the night at the friend’s house as planned, Kenneth decided to drive himself home.
He fell asleep at the wheel. He crossed the center line and hit another car head-on. The driver of the other car died immediately.
Kenneth woke up in a hospital and learned he had taken someone’s life.
Kenneth was sentenced to seven years in prison. While in prison, he lost his dream career. He lost his marriage.
After years in prison, when he was put in transitional housing, he roomed with seven other guys most of whom were believers in Jesus Christ. Kenneth began reading the Bible and soon gave his life to the Lord Jesus Christ. He learned of the love and grace God has for us and that what God wants most is to have a relationship with us.
Jesus made a significant difference in Kenneth’s life even while he was still in prison. He remembers talking with some of the other men about how the prison they were in was just a physical prison. “There are so many people outside of these walls that are walking around in prison even though they are free,” Kenneth said. “Even though we are in these walls and in prison, in our hearts and in our minds, we can be free.”
Some people who have loved God have been in prison. Joseph, in the Old Testament, was wrongly put in prison. In the New Testament, John the Baptist and the Apostle Peter were both imprisoned because of their faith in Jesus. God loves all people—even those who have been in prison or are in prison right now.
Kenneth Jones says what he’s learned through all of this is that, “God is a God of restoration, reconciliation, and redemption. And that there is always hope in Jesus.”
Whether you’re in a physical prison of walls, in a spiritual prison caused by your own sin, or another kind of prison, if Kenneth Jones can find God in prison after a deadly DUI, you can find God, too. You can be free.
See Kenneth Jones tell his story here in this video:
©Dianne E. Butts. Dianne is a freelance writer, author, and screenwriter. Her brother was killed by a DUI driver in 1977 and she wrote about that experience in her first book Dear America http://amzn.to/DearAmerica (now on Kindle). She will be writing about how her brother’s death affected her and what she learned about grief on the new “Thinking About Suicide” site that premieres March 21, 2012. www.DeliverMeBook.blogspot.com