"An Inside Perspective"

July 2012


My Dear Family in Christ,

Ever precious greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ! The other day I was laying on my bunk daydreaming, about what I am not sure, but I was snapped out of it. Snapping someone out of their daydream in prison is not something that you do. In fact, if you do it by mistake you would quickly apologize for it. Perhaps they were daydreaming about some wonderful time with their wife and children or maybe they were “out there” fishing or surfing somewhere. Whatever, they by no means want to be snapped back to these four cold hard walls.

Therefore, if you see someone daydreaming in prison, you would do what is called leaving them “out there.” If you mistakenly snap someone back, you’d then say, “Sorry bro, I should have left you ‘out there.’” Honestly, daydreaming is a great pleasure in prison and the last thing you want is to be brought back when you are “out there.”

Anyway, when I was snapped out of it by Carlos, who was up to one of his many shenanigans, I had a strange thought on my mind. I just laid there staring at the cell thinking, “How many days have I lived in a cell?”

On an aside, speaking of Carlos’ shenanigans, one of his favorites is to “clunk” me with his TV remote control. I made it for him, I have learned, to my own demise! It consists of two regular brown grocery bags opened all the way up, then rolled together very tightly and taped making a four foot stick. Finally, you install and secure a pencil in the end with an eraser on it and boom, you have a customized prison remote control. God forbid you have to sit up to change your channels! I like my remote better, I just don’t have a TV.

Picture if you will Carlos on the top bunk with “the stick” and me, defenseless on the bottom bunk. Being a little older than him I nap very easily, while to his own aggravation, he can’t nap at all. To make matters worse, if I fall asleep on my back I will snore which quickly reminds him that I am napping and he is not. Behold, the two-pronged (no pun intended) use for the prison TV remote control is triggered! Once I am napping, I am at his mercy. Carlos can come from any angle and at any moment with said “stick” and clunk me at will, all in love of course, while justifying his nefarious shenanigan with declarations of my horrific snoring antics. You get the picture, but I digress as is my want, and of such was born the moniker “rabbit-trail Reardon” when I teach or preach.

Anyway, when I was snapped back from my daydream it seems I had an epiphany concerning my having lived in a cell for 21 years, that’s right, 7665 days and counting. I was aghast; how is that possible? The natural next thought was, “How many days are left?” To which I deciphered I now have 3285 days to go before, Lord willing, they have to escort me out the door!

With all that in mind, we know that the natural is always typical, even illustrative of the spiritual. So I choose to learn from it.

Moses said, “For all our days are passed away in Thy wrath: we spend our years as a tale that is told. The days of our years are three score years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labor and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.” (Ps. 90:9-10)

Along those same lines King David said, “Lord, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days, what it is; that I may know how frail I am. Behold my days are as a handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before Thee...” (Psalm 39:4-5a)

Moses and David both wanted to know how short their time was so that they would then have the proper perspective to live their days faithfully. I believe it is the Holy Spirit who causes us to think on these things, to the end that we would refocus our lives if need be. These thoughts are challengingly profound and should motivate us to tweak our walk accordingly.

I observed that I was thinking the same thoughts as Moses and David. Then, these Scriptures came to my mind. I thought, “How many days have I lived on this earth and how many do I have left? If I live to eighty, Lord willing, as Moses said is the norm for a strong man, that would be 29,200 days. I am 55 now, that is 20,075 days. That would leave 9125 days. We know this is all hypothetical, albeit to a point.

Let’s ask ourselves, “How am I doing in my walk with the Lord?” Again in Psalm 119:84a, David chimed, “How many are the days of Thy servant?” Beloved, time is very short no matter what, right? We are all at different ages, even assorted stages of our walk with Jesus Christ. I hope that you are not daydreaming through your walk with the Lord, reminiscing on faithfulness past? We must be faithful today. In love, I will “not” leave you “out there!” I am “not” sorry bro, snap out of it! Moses saw his finished life as “a tale that is told.” Beloved, when all is said and done, what will be your...