Transformation Tuesdays: Deborah Daniels Finds Spiritual Healing

March 26, 2018
Prison Fellowship Transformation Tuesday Deborah Daniels

Image Courtesy of Prison Fellowship

Deborah Daniels had a chaotic childhood. She grew up in Birmingham, Alabama, as one of six children raised by a single mother.

“There was a point in my mom’s life where she decided that selling alcohol would help her to meet her needs in taking care of her children," says Daniels, and so men would come in and out of their home.

Her mother's boyfriend molested her when she was 7 years old, and the abuse continued for about three years. To cope, Daniels turned to marijuana. She was expelled from school for possession.

Daniels began to sell cocaine and crack, searching for "a life of abundance," only to become addicted herself. In 1983, she was sentenced to prison for stealing to support her drug habit, and she was sentenced again in 1988. In 1993, Daniels began her final prison term of 18 years.

"I was angry. I was hurt. I did not know which way to go," she says.

One day in prison, Daniels heard Prison Fellowship volunteers singing nearby: "I had no idea that that day God would come into my heart and change my life completely, forever."

Watch her share her story below:

To hear more second-chance stories, join Prison Fellowship on April 7 for Road to Second Chances, a special community-wide prayer walk to celebrate the dignity and potential of men and women with a criminal history during Second Chance Month. Along the way, men and women will share personal stories of their search for a second chance. The walk, guided by leaders of the local faith community, will begin at the Anacostia Park Skating Pavilion and finish at the DC Dream Center. A free resource fair will connect returning men and women and their families with information on legal, educational, employment, advocacy, and counseling services. 

(Wear white to show support for second chances. The family-friendly event is free and open to the public. Free food and T-shirts will be provided on a limited basis.)

Prison Fellowship believes that every person is made in the image of God, and that no one is beyond His reach. That means there is hope for restoration and healing for prisoners, their families, victims, and all those who have been impacted by crime. Through biblically based programs and a positive community, those who once broke the law can be transformed and mobilized to serve their neighbors, replacing the cycle of crime with a cycle of renewal.

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