My first experience being in, “The Box” came in Cleveland when I was arrested for having received stolen property, my first felony and was there for three days. I was told it was to provide me with orientation, time to resolve inner issues about being locked up; however, later I came to realized, it was not really undergoing, “The Box” experience at all.
Fifteen years later, in Puerto Rico, I spent the first night in, “Population”. I was brought to court the following morning and when returned to the facility, I was taken to the eight floor, stripped of clothing and given a uniform colored orange-pink, shown to a solitary cell within the SHU (Special Housing Unit), or better known if you’re here for disciplinary reasons, “The Box”. Not having anything nor access to anything, would become an exercise of strength but most importantly it would be later considered the best time of my prison experience! This is where I would be given time from all distractions to be with myself and God. My most strenuous battles were fought and won being in, “The Box”. I’m thankful for God’s placement in, “The Box” for over thirty days and it prepared me for Population with direction I otherwise would not have had had I not had the experience of being alone with God in, “The Box”.
During the twenty-six months I was imprisoned in Puerto Rico, I managed to return to, “The Box” for disciplinary reasons, but truth be told, I preferred it there, looked forward to going and even requested to do the remainder of my time but was denied. They thought something was wrong with me but I learned a secret I’m willing to share with you if having to deal with noise, count times, and the method of meals grate against your nerves, then, “The Box” is for you, as well as the privilege of having a private toilet and in some cases, a private shower. Meals are brought to you, normally quiet and you’re able to get some old-fashion prayer, meditation and thinking done you’d struggle to accomplish in Population. I wrote the bulk of my first printed book, “If You Send Me, I Will Go” while being locked in, “The Box” and am very grateful for the quietness provided.
What about you? First, never fear going there especially if you’re going for the standing up for principle not because you were fighting or abusive to authority. All the times I visited, it was never because I was physical or disrespected an officer, it was because I disagreed with policy and willing to stand for what I believed. This should be the same for you.
Do not spend your days there sleeping and dreaming of being out of, “The Box”. Stay awake during the daylight hours and think about yourself. Get in touch with your Creator and allow your relationship to develop to learn the plan He has for your life as well as your case. I can promise your sleep will be sweeter during the dark hours.
“The Box” can be utilized in two differing ways:
- A place of regret and a complete waste of time, or
- A place where you will benefit immensely and could never have gotten anyplace else.
Great men have been locked away, but those greater have stood the test of isolation and have gone on to do great things. It may just be your time!
Enjoy, “The Box”.