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  • Writer's pictureCoach Gwen

Finding My Why!

One gloomy morning, I was riding the 1-240 loop in Memphis, TN on my way to work. This morning was different because I was incredibly sad and crying. It was almost 6 a.m., and I was having an intimate conversation with GOD about my desire to find a better job and why I could not catch a break. I had been applying to different employers and could not even get an interview. I was qualified and, in my opinion, met and exceeded most of the qualifications for the jobs I were applying for.

In the midst of my outburst, it seemed that GOD appeared in the passenger seat and began to answer my questions. Someone was in the car with me because I felt a sense of calm energy enter the car with me during my ride. During this 20-minute drive, I asked questions out loud, and I got answers. By the time I had made it to work, I was no longer crying but walking with a certainty that everything would be alright.

I spent the next 10 years working for my employer, but I was no longer working in torment. It was clear that my purpose was tied to my work and that the greater good I was providing daily would benefit me in the next position that GOD was preparing me for. I worked in Corrections as a Supervisor over a Behavioral Modifications Unit. I worked in the “Belly of the Beast,” as we called it. I spent the latter part of my 25-year tenure helping incarcerated men so that when they returned to society, they would be better than when they had entered the prison.

Initially, I thought my job was to help others, but this is the place where I found and received my healing. I was in my own prison, a mental prison that I needed to be freed from. I had a great deal of healing to do, and each time I poured out to others, GOD was building and restoring me for my NEXT! I found my why while working within the prison walls. I found that I could not leave until I was free and no longer a prisoner anymore to the many demons I was battling.

On April 06, 2021, I bid farewell to my employer after 25 years of dedication to a career that saved my life. I owe a lot to Shelby County Government Division of Corrections because that place raised me into the woman I am today. I thank GOD for not taking her hands off me and for providing me with a vision to see what was in store for me once I had completed my assignment. The strong sense of WHY I was assigned to work with the “least of these” is tied to the work I am committed to continuing for the rest of my life. What other way is there to live a life other than one of service?

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