How to face a struggle with a friend, family member, or co-worker.

How do you handle a struggle with a friend, family member, or co-worker?
by Katie Souza
(Taken from Katie’s Journal written in Prison 2001)

Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you.  1 Peter 5:7 (NIV)

I got a side job today!   Wow, such a blessing!  Lt S. hired me to do the floor in the Security Housing Unit (S.H.U.). I will strip and wax tomorrow night and Sunday night.  Worked with Rosie and Sherrie from 11:00 pm-4:30am!

“Therefore, I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink, or about your body, what you will wear.  Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?”  Matthew 6:25 (NIV)

Didn’t have to do breakfast because of work; I missed church because I had to buff.  I stripped the floor and removed baseboards.  Lots of fighting between the floor crew. The room took from 4:00 pm-10pm; went to wax S.H.U. at 11:00 pm and it took until 4:00 am to finish.

To the faithful you show yourself faithful, to the blameless you show yourself blameless, to the pure you show yourself pure.  Psalm 18:25-26 (NIV)

No work today. No walk. I went to prayer meeting and typing.

“Do not judge, so that you may not be judged.  For with the judgment you make you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get.”  Matthew 7:1-2 (NRSV)

No work again. I walked 3 miles and went to prayer meeting.

Marnie was on the crew today.  Couldn’t buff; we blew out the plugs. Went to prayer meeting, and I prayed for my appeal. Read through Isaiah 45 and 48 about King Cyrus. Jessie has been praying the same way. I came back to my room and my bed was broken! I walked 3 miles and then went to Spanish church.  I praised the Lord, telling him that I trusted Him no matter what happens with the bed and the appeal.

I met with sister Constance and prayed by the commissary for about 30-45 minutes.

Today was my day off and I finished reading the “Strongman” book, then went to choir practice and walked 5 miles.  I was attacked by the enemy at choir practice. Jeanie was there playing her guitar and I just couldn’t sing my song; my feet felt like they were in ice water! It was the same spirit I used to fight and felt like witchcraft, like when Wilma sent that paper and I read it aloud.

BLUEPRINT* “Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone; so that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.”  Mark 11:25 (KJV)

I still could not sing what I was supposed to sing, which was “Closer to the Heart.”  I believe God is letting this happen to me, so that when I am out evangelizing or singing and this happens to me, I’ll stop, rebuke it, and toss it out in Jesus’ name!

Today I deep washed the lower deck and waxed it “state style.” The floor looked BAD! I went in on my day off and re-did the floor my way; it looks much better.

After prayer meeting, I came back to my room and I got a new mattress from Ms. L – wow, what a blessing!  Sherrie prayed for me tonight and she cried!

BLUEPRINT* I noticed that I get hot and sweaty as I’m looking for scriptures to pray and as I’m praying.  Then I cool way down as soon as I’m done.  Holy Spirit…

“Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly; do not claim to be wiser than you are.”  Romans 12:16 (ESV)

MISS D ARRIVED!!  Praise God! I waxed the upper deck. Marnie is an open door to enemy on the floor crew.  Lord, loose a spirit of unity on the floor crew; bind up strife.

At choir practice Miss M said I was going to sing on the 4th!  Today I got money from mom and dad. I buffed the S.H.U. floor again. Somebody has been washing it with simple green, which took the wax off. I fought bad with Agnes and then lost my voice because of it.

“Therefore, I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men.”  1 Timothy 2:1 (NKJV)

At church – I didn’t sing again. I apologized and asked for forgiveness from Agnes in front of the whole church. I walked 3 miles then called mom and dad.

…Living and working in close community with other inmates brought challenges and joys.

Can you think of some challenges you have had lately with the people you work with?

What are some of the joys you have experienced regarding co-workers or family?

Is there a particular scripture that comes to mind that can help you resolve a negative situation, how 1 Timothy 2:1 helped me? If so – share it below!

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  • lndjnsjns

    Yes…Latest one is – our church does fairs to raise money. The majority of tables have a reasonable amount of not bad stuff – some nice. I however have been helping out on the bric a brac stall which is just boxfuls of tat which we have to unpack then pack again at the end taking hours or seems like. We asked the woman in charge if we could dump most of it as it is the same stuff year after year. We were informed that ‘That’s not happening!” I found that there was a deeper level to what i consider over control and was having a fight with myself. The two women i work with on the stall are like…”oh my back!” I’m like Oh my head altho’ I’m very spiritual and don’t say anything. I still don’t know what I will do. I have a sneaking suspicion i should just shut up and work as someone else has said here but….i don’t know. Hoping God will sort it.

  • Cindy

    Katie, I’ve been listening to Victory in trial over and over. And when I heard you say you had that vision of you mopping a floor in heaven, I wanted to bust up laughing….with you of course. God has such a sense of humor. I’m so happy when I get to enjoy it. I was thinking of all the times you wrote about prison and buffing the floors and then he takes you to heaven to “mop up!” That’s pretty clever of Him.

    For me, I didn’t know anything about words, the tongue, the power of words, the power of letting the Holy Spirit use our mouth to release Heaven’s will and strategies into the earthly realm (i.e. praying in the Spirit or whatever name people use.) I listened to Kevin Zadai’s first two books 20 times each—I’d been a believer 46 years at that time, and had never noticed or heard any of it taught. You can grow up in church and know about the same amount about God as you might have. I haven’t read your book yet, so I don’t know your whole story. It’s not like I didn’t listen to my Bible every day and all that. I did. But without the guidance of the Holy Spirit, it’s easy to miss just about everything.

    Anyway, my mouth needed needed an extreme makeover, which was so surprising to me. I was so careful to never gossip or even listen to gossip or to speak negatively of anyone. I thought I had my mouth in pretty good control. I knew I had other things I needed to deal with, but that one came as a big shocker!!! So, one of many verses that I hang on to and decree or just say almost daily is the one about Be quick to listen and slow to speak. There’s more to that verse, but that right there is enough to remind me of that focus until my tongue is completely bridled. I’ve made huge progress, but I have not yet hit perfection with the tongue. But I’m going to, I tell you!!!

    I’ve learned so so much from you, and I am so thankful God directed me to you when I’d never heard of you. Crazy. I’ve been here since 1983. If I could do it all again, I’d move to Maricopa right when you first started.

  • Michael

    Thank you Jesus! Thank you Holy Spirit for holy conviction of our hearts to humble me, to humble us all Lord, we need you!
    Change us dear Lord and make our hearts like yours that we may walk in love and forgiveness. Help me Lord, help us all Lord for apart from you we can do nothing. Help us to live holy because you the Lord our God are Holy. Amen!