Bread Of Shame

Mark Henley

Out of a small window, viewing a large prison yard with hundreds of inmates involved in daily recreation. A common recreational event is observed clearly out of this small window: "Prison drug trade." Put four hundred inmates on a prison yard, while three hundred fifty are all drug addicts. What you have is the largest drug ring my eyes have ever seen.

I write to you by humble means. A single individual, in a single cell: chief among sinners, always praising Christ for salvation given to me. I come as a recovering addict in Christ behind prison walls. Nothing more, nothing less.

A down-on-his-luck man who is forced to accept charity from others because he lacks the means to feed himself is said to eat "the bread of shame." Job 30:3-8; Luke 15:16-17.

Poverty is a very old social disease that affects millions. Another form of poverty is spiritual poverty. Spiritually impoverished individuals (Revelation 3:17-18) are subject to a wide-spread epidemic affecting us all right now, in 2006! Drug addiction!

The drug addict's "bread of shame" is the very drug he consumes. 1 Corinthians 11:29. Just like bread filling the financially impoverished stomach, drugs fill the spiritually impoverished soul. The addict's "bread of shame" is the evil force that keeps his own soul at bay while giving demonic spirits permission to drive his own will. Psalm 10:8-10.

It would be safe to say, "Drug addicts are working as Satan's soldiers, pouring destruction upon our families, communities, and society as a whole." Accounts of drug abuse in scripture always ended in drastic mishaps. Noah debased himself with wine and became completely humiliated. Noah's reaction affects history to this day. Genesis 9:21-27. Lot's daughters intoxicated their father with wine and committed sexual immorality with him. Genesis 19:30-35.

These single accounts show how harmful toxins can be on human nature. Now, think of an individual who lives every day searching and filling this toxic state. He or she does whatever it takes robbing, stealing, extorting, killing, etc. ... To get what he seeks "bread of shame."

Satan is very clever and very real within this societal diseased epidemic of drug addiction. Satan uses man as his tool in manufacturing, packaging, and delivering these drugs to our communities, city streets, and prisons. Yes, the very prisons that house these drug addicts for crimes committed have become drug dens with little to no consequences for individual actions of use.

When institutions used to combat these drugs become part of the problem, we can say this has become a colossal epidemic.

There is a solution! It rests in the Holy Word. John 17:17. Men and women who have overcome drug addiction are transformed into new beings. 2 Corinthians 5:17. Addicts who are trying to recover but who cannot turn their lives over to the care of God, always fall into the process of returning to eat of the "bread of shame." (2 Corinthians 4:4)

Today, I eat of the "bread of life" which fills my soul with the utmost glory and peace. (John 6:35) If I had never walked in darkness, I would have never seen the light. Ephesians 5:8-20. Sussex II State Prison, 24427 Mussle White Dr., Waverly, VA 23891.


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