Tag Archives: #lovewins

Good Friday Meets Jesus On Death Row

Good Friday Meets Jesus On Death Row

Good Friday Meets Jesus On Death Row

Good Friday Meets Jesus On Death Row

Reflecting on the depth of despair that must have been present on Good Friday, it feels unfathomable to encounter such forgiveness that Jesus extended towards those who not only condemned and executed Him, but the criminals hanging alongside of Him as He awaited His execution.

Here we become so hurt and violated over petty assaults stemming from moments of disregard, gossip, and hurled insults.  But to proclaim this unimaginable mercy as one looks down on those condemning Him, “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34), it’s obvious we have no idea of the resurrection power that is available to us and at work in us.

Whoever thought love, forgiveness and second chances would require resurrection power?  We generally lean inward to self to believe we’re only talking about our failures, our sins, our mistakes and our regrets.

Oh, how I want to love like Jesus!

Don’t you?

Blameless and Forever Free Ministries and Chaplain Tammy believes culture changes one heart at a time. Transformed people transform culture, all in the Name of Love!

Everything Jesus did for us, He did out of love.  God showed His Great Love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners (Romans 5:8).  God didn’t just say He loved us, He showed us.

Love is an action that we tend to forget that requires active participation; loving when we don’t feel like it.  We want it OUR WAY AND WHEN WE FEEL LIKE LOVING!!!

Easter shows us the depth and width of God’s Great Love. The Bible says in Psalm 57:3 that God will send down help from heaven to save us because of His Love.  That’s what Jesus did on Easter. Jesus came from heaven to save us because of His amazing love.

And when they came to the place that is called “The Skull,” they crucified Jesus there with the criminals, one on His right and one on His left (Luke 23:33).

Amazing how Jesus is still showing His Love as He takes the works of the crucifixion and turns it into the first “Christian community” placing emphasis on the criminals alongside of Him.  

A Christian community is when two or more are gathered together. Jesus established the first Christian Community with prisoners. The Word declares it, For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them” (Matthew 18:20).

Jesus may have appeared insignificant to the world; yet, He is our greatest gift that keeps on giving and our greatest advocate!  Without His Great Love, we surely could not love.  Without His forgiveness, we truly could not forgive and release the imprisonment of rage and bitterness. 

Blameless and Forever Free Ministries Forgiveness Practice

This is the beauty and power of the resurrection as Good Friday Meets Jesus On Death Row.  When Jesus stretched His arms out as wide as the cross, He was saying, “I love you this much!  I love you to eternity. I love you so much, it hurts.  I love you so much, I’ll die for you so that I won’t have to live without you.”  

Knowing I’m loved like that, transforms and unleashes courage to be all He says I am and can be!

Isn’t that why we’re told to love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins?

Because of what Jesus did for us on Good Friday, leading to Resurrection Sunday (Easter), forgiveness reminds us that we cannot diminish human beings.  “We’re all capable of being better than our worst selves.”

They crucified Jesus with criminals, and there’s good reason Jesus made it a point to draw our focus towards those incarcerated both at the beginning of His ministry (Luke 4:18-19) and all the way to the end (Matthew 25:35-36).

The Church is challenged to Call For Abolition by advocating for the repeal of capital punishment.  This requires the Body of Christ to walk out through LOVE human dignity that requires us to build opportunities for healing, community and redemption.

We can’t just pretend to love others.  We have to really love them!!!  Hate what is wrong.  Hold tightly to what is good (Romans 12:9).

He is Risen!


Until next time…

Blameless and Forever Free Ministries and Chaplain Tammy believes the depth of our pain is an indication of the pinnacle awaiting in our future.

The Depth Of Our Pain Is An Indication Of The Pinnacle Awaiting In Our Future!

Blameless and Forever Free Ministries believes the depth of our pain is an indication of the pinnacle awaiting in our future!

The Depth Of Our Pain Is An Indication Of The Pinnacle Awaiting In Our Future!

Everybody’s screaming for a different story right now, drinking and smoking more, through all the unknowns, the diseases, the division, and the despair from loneliness and death, but I’M NOT!!!

Well…

Honestly, I am suffering with my greatest health crisis ever right now, but my Lord doesn’t leave us to our own strength to conquer these summits alone. He simply asks us to trust and remember that when we’re weak, He is strong!

I admit, when the physical and emotional pain is unbearable and you literally can’t move, sometimes crying me a Noah’s Flood is the only thing moving in full force!

Chaplain Tammy believes that Tears come from the heart where healing starts.

But the Lord said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10

The depth of our pain is an indication of the pinnacle awaiting in our future.

When we experience trauma, our trust in the world, our relationships, and ourselves are often broken. We heal in community and in relationship with others, not suffering ALONE in silence and isolation.

Blameless and Forever Free Ministries and Chaplain Tammy understands that trauma upends everything we took for granted, including things we didn’t know we took for granted. -C Woodwiss

Blameless and Forever Free Ministries is an ACEs-aware nonprofit organization, which is part of an initiative of the Office of the California Surgeon General and the Department of Health Care Services, offering Medi-Cal providers training, clinical protocols, and payment for screening children and adults for ACEs.

Together we are working to raise awareness about the effects of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) in hopes of building a healthier community and a brighter future for our children and future generations.  

The importance of acknowledging our stressors of the past in order to thrive in the present along with practical tips to build greater resilience requires understanding how our earlier experiences influence our relationships today. 

Prevention is intervention. We have to invest heavily into people’s lives and transform our prisons into healing centers!  95% of our incarcerated population will be released and will become our neighbors.  If we want safe communities, we need to invest NOW into their lives through rehabilitation programs leading to redemption. That requires prevention. 

Blameless and Forever Free Ministries aims for Folsom State Prison to be an iconic symbol of healing and wholeness where all parties (incarcerated people along with staff) transform culture together through trauma-informed practices. 

Our residents inside our prisons need healing and wholeness to overcome their addiction, their anxiety, their depression, and the anger caused by a childhood filled with the trauma of abuse, neglect and household dysfunction.  This trauma we’re speaking of occurs before their 18th birthday.  Our families are broken and this is where we get to change the paradigm and work proactively together.

If you’d like to look at or take the ACEs survey, click here

Blameless was created to provide curriculum and programs that help break the cycle of intergenerational and systemic trauma and crime. With our prisons being in lockdown for almost a year, we have our work cut out for us once we’re allowed entry back into the prisons. Lives suffering in silence and isolation poses a threat to both the individual and the stability of the setting. Connection is vital to stable mental health.

When people learn what adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) are, what the typical responses are to trauma, it helps them understand themselves; why they react instead of responding, those ugly, pesky triggers; that they’re not crazy; they understand their own feelings and their behaviors, which is part of the work we’re doing and what we’re trying to help them understand.

Blameless and Forever Free Ministries along with Chaplain Tammy understands that grieving is social, and so is healing!

Our men and women in prison have the highest ACE scores.  Amazingly, if you have four or more ACEs, you’re seven times more likely to be incarcerated in your lifetime.  We can’t forget, these traumas occur before age 18; that’s catastrophic for everyone.

Even myself, I have a score of 7 ACEs out of 10.  It was by the grace of God ONLY that He turned my traumas and household dysfunction into vessels of love and healing to engage with and walk alongside of those who are hurting, abandoned, rejected and traumatized.

I also humbly did the work because I saw what trauma has done to generations of my own amazing family and I wanted this curse severed.

Somebody has to initiate CHANGE! I pray it’s you…

Blameless and Forever Free Ministries Forgiveness Practice

As I often share my own painful traumas, I am a survivor of violent crimes (yes, plural). I was married into law enforcement. I have been a commissioned chaplain since 2010, and I also had a son incarcerated due to his own deep hurts of anger brought on by trauma growing up.  I’ve worn many hats on every side of this revolving door while working in the criminal justice system, but I refuse to hide underneath a mourning veil when there are lives in need of hope and healing.

Blameless and Forever Free Ministries, along with Chaplain Tammy, believes everyone has value!

There is no shame in our game; Jesus is His Name!  And I pray relentlessly that you can understand that prevention is intervention and it starts with us, all of us, especially the Body of Christ, NOW!!!  There’s no time to waste.  Time is a valuable commodity.

Everyone Has Value!

Until next time…

Blameless and Forever Free Ministries and Chaplain Tammy believes that human suffering could connect all of us, if only we had the courage to share in it.