I've been watching the various ways people are dealing with the nation's heat wave on Facebook. Some have swimming pools in their yard or in the neighborhood, some live along or near Lake Michigan or an inland lake, some are blessed to have central air conditioning in their homes. While I, too, enjoy air conditioning in our home, in my car and in our office, I am living in a slightly different world: the world of prisoners.
Prisoners, for the most part, have no escape from this heat. A friend in a Nevada prison contacted me during the last heat wave to say just how terrible it was. I wonder how he's doing now. One of our supporters in Las Vegas said it was 117 there yesterday.
Many of the activities in Michigan prisons are canceled when it is this hot. The heat is brutal in the prisons. One inmate told me that he went out into the yard in the evening, where it was still 85 degrees. But he said that was still cooler than the air in his cell. Another reports that when the temperature gets so high, tension gets higher also. Another said he had a heat-related illness, but still was not issued a fan, and the windows in the cell won't open. We contacted the prison, and were told that if the inmate wants a fan he's going to have to buy it, and it's not necessary for the windows to be open because there's a good air circulation system.
I post this little message, not to tell you anything new, but to remind you how good we have it, and how unpleasant it is behind bars.
Follow the advice in Hebrews, and remember those in prison as if you were in prison with them.