Wednesday, April 17, 2019 –
Yesterday, I went to visit my “case manager” about applying for presidential clemency. I learned that she had become very familiar with my case. Surprisingly, I discovered that as of right now, my scheduled release date was July 15, 2021, which is almost 5 months earlier than my sentence. This was discovered by looking at my sentencing report, which also said I was non-violent. After getting the paperwork needed for the clemency request I left and began to review the form she gave me. This created more questions in my mind, which I planned to go back and ask about.
However, a week or so ago, I received an email from the prison describing the requirements for a new program to release seniors (60+ years) who were likely not recidivism risks. To qualify, you have to be 60, with no prior history of felonies, a non-violent offender, and already have served two-thirds of your term. So when I asked her about the questions on the commutation from, I also asked about that program. She actually had a sheet of all the inmates in the prison who will eventually qualify, and I was on it! She started out by stating, “but you don’t qualify.” Pressing her, she said, “well it’s because you have not served two-thirds of your term”. She actually had the date when I will qualify, and it is early November of next year. That was really good news! There are other programs for which I may also qualify for an earlier release.
I recognize, however, that I will be released whenever God wants me released. No sooner, no later. This morning I read again the words God had given to Isaiah (Isaiah 41:10-13):
10 “Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’
11 “Behold, all those who are angered at you will be shamed and dishonored; Those who contend with you will be as nothing and will perish.
12 “You will seek those who quarrel with you, but will not find them, Those who war with you will be as nothing and non-existent.
13 “For I am the LORD your God, who upholds your right hand, Who says to you, ‘Do not fear, I will help you.’”
This reminded me of an article I had just read about the liberal non-profit organization that had brought the two lawsuits against me, my company, my daughter and others, entitled: “Southern Poverty Law Center in tatters. Credibility as last word on hate takes hit with bias, harassment claims” (https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2019/apr/3/tom-cotton-calls-irs-investigate-southern-poverty-/).
I have been praying for salvation for all of these people, as I am to bless my enemies.
On Monday, when Kathie had come to see me, I had just told her I had told the Lord that if God wants to spend three whole years here, I’m willing to do so. And the next day I find out I’ll be home in 18 and a half months. Praise the Lord! This morning, I also read Isaiah 43:1-3, a scripture Lucille at Advancing Native Missions prays each night over me. “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have redeemed you; I have called you by my name; you are Mine! When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, nor will flame burn you.”
I can truly say, praise the Lord, that this prayer has been met in more ways imaginable!