I am fond of acronyms and use them often to teach truth in simple fashion. Last week I took my annual recurrent training at the prison in Carlisle. I was handed a two page list of Designated Acronyms. One caught my attention. IOD. No, this does not stand for “I am Odd.”
IOD is the acronym for Inside Out Dads. Several prisons across America, including most Federal Prisons are using some form of IOD to encourage prisoners to learn to bond with their children, under horrific conditions to be sure.
When men meet certain criteria they are given the chance to interact with their children under strict rules and supervision. Often they earn a time of activities in a special section of the prison where families can be in a more natural setting. Parenting classes are part of the criteria. This is important as most prisoners have had little or no experience with their father, thus are at a loss on how to be effective as a father. This arrangement is not perfect, but it helps to establish effective parenting principles from the father’s perspective. It gives the children the sense that “Dad really does love me.”
Say a prayer for these efforts as they are playing a tremendous part in giving children a real chance at breaking the dysfunctional cycle of broken families.
Proverbs 1:8, “My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother:”
Copyright © 2013 Larry Lilly
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