“for which I suffer trouble as an evildoer, even to the point of chains; but the word of God is not chained” (2 Tim. 2:9).

I was on prison chaplain duty when I saw an inmate coloring in a children’s coloring book. It’s rare that I see men coloring in a color book, and definitely not something I’ve seen in prisons. 

I expected his inmates to tease him about his children’s color book, but everyone around him seemed to accept this as who he is and what he does. I sat down and asked about his picture. He and his daughter color pictures and exchange them in the mail. His 3-year-old little girl isn’t able to read yet, so coloring is their bridge to communicate love for each other. 

The man asked if I wanted to see his daughter’s drawings. I wish you could have seen his eyes light up when I answered, “Of course!” I’d love to watch his daughter’s response every time she gets pictures from her dad.

Rick Johnson, author of “That’s My Girl That’s My Girl: How a Father’s Love Protects and Empowers His Daughter: Johnson, Rick: 9780800733834: Amazon.com: Books and founder of Better Dads Better Dads, Stronger Sons: How Fathers… book by Rick Johnson (thriftbooks.com), wrote, “God has placed within a daughter’s heart the inherent desire, even need, to love and respect their faither. Many girls with fathers in prison still hold them up on a pedestal and refuse to acknowledge their failings.”

Johnson explains, “A father’s spoken, or written words contain great power. A man’s hurtful word can cripple his child’s soul for life. One woman spoke of a paper-coated clothes hanger that was her most cherished possession. Her father had written, ‘I love you’ on it when she was a little girl. She carried it with her through college and into her marriage. Elderly people have told me their only regret in life was that they never heard their father say, ‘I’m proud of you’ or ‘I love you.’”

I’m eager to see this man and his daughter’s relationship develop, especially after he finishes his prison term. He may not be able to show up as the father he wants or needs to be right now, but he strives to do what he can. That includes coloring pictures to mail to his little girl.

Jesus, thank you for this man who creatively shows love to his daughter. Help his colorful example teach other men how vital their parental role is in their child’s life. He and his girl are physically separated, yet he doesn’t allow imprisonment to shackle or limit his love. Let this man’s prison sentence color our world with powerful witness. 

Coloring the FROG Blog with bright perspective,


Reader! Your turn!

How do you show love when you are separated from someone?

What’s the most creative way others have shown love to you?

For an audio version of this FROG Blog, you can go to ( A Slice Of Pie With Christina Mae | RSS.com) or search on You Tube for previous episodes.

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