Shani, 39

Shani, 39

Meet Shani…

Being isolated forced me to look up. I began to seek God. I prayed and read the Bible. I committed to attending church services, Bible studies, and discipleship classes to build a relationship with God. I built relationships with men of faith to help me grow spiritually. I began to feel the presence of God in my life.

Incarcerated: 6 years

Housed: Patuxent Institution, Jessup, Maryland

I have been sentenced to 40 years for a non-violent drug offense. Before I came to prison I depended on illegal means to support my family. I always had high entrepreneurial aspirations to make a good living, but I had no knowledge or foundation. I believed I had to live a life of crime in order to survive. I thought I could make enough to start my own business and then fly straight. I was proven wrong. It landed me in prison, away from my family for a very long time. My whole life had changed. I lost everything. My family relationships were destroyed. My closest friends betrayed and abandoned me. I was left alone. I was in my darkest hour. The only thing I had left was my faith. Being isolated forced me to look up. I began to seek God. I prayed and read the Bible. I committed to attending church services, Bible studies, and discipleship classes to build a relationship with God. I built relationships with men of faith to help me grow spiritually. I began to feel the presence of God in my life. God began to provide me with all of my immediate needs. My relationship with my family began to be restored. They forgive me and the actions that lead me to prison. I won the visitation of my sons so I could have a relationship with them. Things began to turn around. I have educated myself by reading book after book on financial literacy. I now have a solid financial foundation so I don’t have to do the wrong things to earn a living. I no longer feel or think the same. I have broken the mental bondage I had to do the wrong things to make living. I am not where I used to be spiritually and mentally. I have grown. And I am ready to close this chapter in my life and make the next chapter my best chapter. I want to start an assisted living home for the elderly.

 

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