Most people, when receiving a prison sentence, would likely react with sadness, frustration, or even anger. Marcus had a surprisingly different reaction: happiness.

“I was happy because I knew God heard my prayers,” he explained.

Marcus grew up attending church regularly with his family, but he was heavily influenced by the people around him running the streets and selling drugs.

“Seeing these things, I chose to be like them,” he said. “For years, I was into using and selling drugs, which led to other things.”

Although Marcus had accepted Jesus as a child, he wasn’t ready to live for Him. He was “out there in the world looking for love and acceptance.” He half-heartedly asked God for guidance but maintained a solid grip on his lifestyle. Eventually, this lifestyle landed him in prison with a twelve-year sentence.

“Most people would be mad at this point, but not me,” Marcus remembered. “I knew this is what must be done in order to get me clean, save my life, and get me ready for missions with Jesus.”

Knowing he needed to be around people who would positively influence his life, Marcus wasted no time getting connected with other Christians in his facility.

“I joined the faith-based dorm,” he said. “A friend told me about Crossroads Bible studies, [and] I joined—one of the best things I’ve done because, in those studies, I was able to learn the Bible in a way I could understand.”

As he studied Scripture and read the letters from his caring Crossroads mentors, he finally found the love and acceptance he had been searching for.

“It touched my heart so deep . . . to see that there are people out there that still love us inmates no matter what we [have] done or been through,” said Marcus. “That was a turning point that opened my eyes to what love was about.”

Today, Marcus is fully committed to serving the Lord.

“I realized, after all this, I could not and would not ever go back to my old life,” he stated. “I’m letting Jesus work in my life. Jesus is the answer. I tried everything, and it did not work. But when I [tried] the Word of God, I [found] Jesus and all I need.”

Will you share the love of Jesus with people like Marcus who are aching to be accepted and loved? Learn more about becoming a Crossroads mentor.