HOUSTON -- A group of pastors led by Bishop James Dixon walked through the corridors of the Harris County Jail Thursday to deliver a message about Nelson Mandela.
“He was in prison for 27 years and became the president of the same country,” said Dixon. “That’s the model. That’s the hero.”
Dixon spoke to a few dozen inmates who gathered in a meeting room to listen and take notes.
“This is not my dead end,” professed Dixon. “You cannot see this as your destiny. You’ve got to see this as your place of detour.”
Dixon challenged the inmates in the room to do better.
“I see people who have not given themselves a chance to be who they really are. I see people who have given up on that. I see people who think they’ve made too many mistakes.”
But no matter the reason the inmates were locked up, Dixon wanted them to know that you can still do great, powerful things with your life even after time behind bars.
His message seemed to resonate.
“It was really inspiring,” said Corey Mackey, serving time for sexual assault. “I was glad to be a part of it.”
Another inmate serving time for the illegal distribution of steroids, said he felt inspired. “I want to get out,” said Brian Martin. “I want to be a better person when I get out.”
Mandela changed a nation and influenced the world. Dixon just wants to change a few hearts.
“You don’t have to settle for what you did,” said Dixon. “That’s not who you are.”