Growing up the way the I did in an impoverished neighborhood with five siblings and two parents in my household (until the death of my father at the age of 14), the only consistency in shaping my life that I can recall, was surrounded by an abundance of dreams, aspirations, high hopes and wishful thinking that my siblings and I expressed to one another as children. I was never shown the productivity that true consistency yielded. As a result, the development of my imagination into real possibilities was impaired.
My thinking was shaped “unconsciously” from this under development, and it spilled over into every part of my life. Eventually I found the right course by the grace of God in my latter years. Self-evaluation exposed the depth of inconsistency I reflected; I was consistently inconsistent.
My childhood dreams had no foundation to build upon. Therefore, my skewed thinking eventually crippled my mind with beliefs that did not reflect sound fundamentals. .
Consequently, I had a false picture of what consistency should allow, including criminality. Every goal executed and destination conquered… and each desire fulfilled. I concluded in my subconscious that these were accomplishments.
This way of thinking finally caused my incarceration, which landed me in my current position. Along this “new” journey I met some strong men who knew a “Man” that could relate to the conflict within me. I was pointed to Jesus and consistency was placed in its proper perspective. Consistency for me now is nourishment; it feeds your spirit all the nutrients essential to grow, produce, and ultimately feed others.
This is what my Lord has done and continues to do in my life. I am now equipped to be a picture of consistency to those who are dealing with similar situations. Just as I was embraced, built up, and loved into being the man I am today, I, too, have made myself available to be a lifeline, by the grace of God, to someone as well. My life now reflects a light that always reminds me of humbled beginnings, and it is that same light that I will use to empower lives!
God bless you.
By Willie Gooding, a member of the ministry known as “L.A.M.B. Squad” (Leading All Men to Brotherhood) an inmate outreach located at The State Correctional Institute at Dallas, PA.
You can write to Willie Gooding at the following address:
Smart Communications / PADOC
Willie Gooding EW4226
PO Box 33028
St. Petersburg, FL 33733