FMOC - Member Testimony Page
Marcus Studstill & Robert Starling
Rodrick Crawford & Marcus Stusatill
Testimony from FMOC board member Brother Roderick Crawford
Who Am I? My name is Roderick Crawford. I'm from Jacksonville, Fl and I'm in Prison with a 30 year FDOC Prison sentence, followed by 10 years Probation for Alcohol Rehabilitation. I was charged with 1st degree Murder which I could have been punish by death, or Life in Prison, but only by the grace and mercy of Jesus Christ I'm not on DeathRow as we speak.
I grew up in a middle class home with two working Parents. My mother worked as a cosmetologist in a Beauty Salon. She later own and operated Her on Beauty Salon. My Dad worked as a Physical Ed.Teacher w/Elementary student's at the Duval County School Board, and he also worked as a Detention care worker for the Duval Detention Center on 8th Street, In Jacksonville, Fl. A Good Family Right? Statistically I should've turned out a pretty decent kid! In 1996, I was 32 Years old w/ a fresh Murder Charge where I pled out to 2 Degree Murder w/ a Firearm. I don't normally ever discuss my crime because it is to horrific to go into details.This is a clear case of a foolish decision fueled with rage, drugs, and alcohol mixed. Of course this is no excuse for my actions, because I take full responsibility for my culpability and negligence. I am very contrite for my decision that happened so fast.
What is this Testimony for? Mrs. Shawna Sheffield, aka Sister Soldier asked me to provide and let others know the Ripple effects of my actions. Therefore others may not make the same mistakes that I made in my life. Upon the ultimate day when I was in Judgment and Sentencing Court. I asked God/Jesus Christ to not to allow the Prosecutors to take my life and I would serve him for the rest of my Life.
From the moment I called out to the Lord to Please save me. I was desperately hurting in need of a Savior. A thought had come into my mind that I wasn't going to prison and that I was going to end my life. I found myself riding around going to my friends houses to say my last good bye's. I gave Anthony all my cash money that I had in my pockets and my Gold chains, nugget bracelets, and rings to give to my Mother. After all that I still was driving around when I ended up at Earl Lasters house. He greeted me "The Famous Rod Crawford." I uttered , I don't feel so famous because I just killed somebody. That got his attention, they both got silent and was watching my face to see if I was kidding or not. Because they were standing in the dark. The Lake was behind his home and even the magnificence of it's glow mad me feel ashamed of myself. Later on these two heroes ended up taking my Glock 17 away from me. But I ended up taking their car which we were riding in. I was in the back seat of the car at the time. They were whispering in the front seat and jumped out the car and rushed me in the back seat. We tussled for a minute but I didn't want to relinquish the Glock and my last attempt was to bite my friends arm to let me go. Earl is about 6'4" ,I didn't want to harm them. I just wanted the weapon back so that I could end it all. The pain was too great to want to live any longer. But God who is rich in Mercy for his great love wherewith he love us even when we were dead in tress passes in sin did he save me.
When was I saved ? I believed that I was saved at that very moment when my classmates took that weapon from me and stopped me from committing and an unpardonable sin which is self Murder. There is no Salvation for killing ones self. So I dedicated my Life to Jesus Christ literally in the Duval County Jail. I was diligently in searching for a Bible, and one Day the mailman came by my Isolation Cell. He said some lady sent you a Bible but you can't have it. I asked why? He said because it have a metal name tag with your full Name engraved on it. I begged him to permanently deface my property by pulling it off. He did so and I know it was God who allowed me to have that NIV Study Bible to learn Gods Holy word. I was a Substitute Teacher ,Certified Drivers Ed.Teacher, High School Football Assistant Coach at Ribault Sr. High School, Duval Co. I'm in prison for being foolish and the devil don't care about your College Degree, because I have a B.S. degree in Criminal Justice.The Devil Primary purpose is to Steal, Kill, and to destroy. And Jesus said, "For the Son of Man is come to save that which was lost. (Matthew 18:11)The Bible also says "Man that is born of a woman is of few days and full of trouble. He cometh forth like a Flower, and is cut down: he fleet also as a shadow, and continueth not(Job 14:1-2). I have seen men Try to literally kill each other while in prison. I have seen young boys join gangs and try to back out when they get in too deep. I have also help assist others stop men from going to stab one another to death with a poker. Last but not least I have seen men with Life sentences cry out to God for 24 years and those gates and wire fences have not open for them yet. And like a faithful man nicknamed Mr. Booney. In his case I have seen God up close and Personal set him free from Death row ,to a Life sentence, to being exonerated on some type of cold cases in Jacksonville, Fl. Now that's a miracle. Even in my Life with my Dad dying last August 20, 2019 at the age of 81. I could not attend the Funeral services although I met the criteria to attend on an 8 hour furlough.Now I've 24 months left on my sentence and my Mother is I'll. Do you wish to live your life in regret or what-ifs. I urge all young and old "Please don't use drugs, weapons, or abuse alcohol." Trouble is easy to get into and too hard to get out of. Ask Jesus Christ to come into your life, he can save u from the devil snares! In any crime there is a Victim and the ripple effects are very costly on all family members and love ones etc. We have children who needs us free, and most important we need Fathers to be there to protect their wives, girlfriends, and Families. And Mother's don't take for granted your responsibilities as a Parent. Think before you Act out of Anger. Amen Thank U.
Testimony from FMOC Member Stephanie Pitsey
How are you doing today Sister Sheffield, I was delighted to read your e-meil as always it gives me hope to know that Jehova will always give me another chance. Psalms 119:65-72, Proverbs 24:23-34,Ec.2:12-17,I am dealing with being a wise person not to be a foolish person,because wisdom is the key to life I'm praying that the Holly Spirit takes over my life because some of us avoid to coop with our own pains by trying to fix the world I try to right every wrong in everybody's life I was spending my time demanding the world system refer the Holly Spirit is teaching me that I should stay in God's grace by following his laws instead of worrying about the worlds I am putting myself in danger by focusing on the world instead of focusing on Johava who rules the world I have testimonies that God has done in my life super natural testimonies in 1993 I was in the hospital with deadly illness with fever of 106 my body shut down but God held me in did not let death claim me after 31 days fighting for my life I told the Doctors thank you but they told me no thank me for there was nothing they could have done but God did it all that's my testimony I have. God teaches me everyday I am a living testimony You know Sister Sheffield, just being a live today is testimony because of the life I lived I should have been dead, I am so high in the spirit I can hardly contain myself my love for God I can't put it in words he is just a wonder in my life, my soul and my sprit,my mind body, magnify God whom is the head of my life that I'm so in love with he puts the joy in me I can only imagine when I meet him face to face will I dance before him it just bring tears to my eyes to mention his name.
I pray your family and the world is in God's grace may he keep you and your family in his powerful arms...love Sister Mary I will always pray for your church
Testimony from FMOC Member James Floyd
My name is Jams Floyd, most just call me brother James, or Rock Solid.
My birth place of Saint, Petersburg, FL, where I was raised with three sister's and brother's. My parents are decease. I have been given a blessing by my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and the privilege by my sister in Christ sister soldier. To speak encouragement in your life through my testimony.
Living an indiscipline life with on sense of purpose kept me involved in the streets. Where Satan was orchestrating a plane to kill me. In my ignorance, I coulden't see it.
At 23 years old, I found myself in a courtroom, on trial for first degree murder. My father had always told me I would never amount to anything, I guessed he was right. I was sentenced to die in Florida's electric chair in 1984. The devil had me right where he wanted me. I was living under a death sentence, totally blind, afraid, angry and isolated. Satan had wrapped his lies of hopelessness around my mind and was suffocating the very life out of me. When I arrived at Florida State Prison, I knew I'd reached my buried growing. The mere sight of that place filled me with fear, and it intensified as I saw the faces of the condemned prisoners that lined the narrow walkway to my 6x9 cell. My first 6 months of experiencing someone being executed, only amplified my despair because he was a friend. I told myself, what's the use of me fighting when I was going to die anyway. How do you fight death? Someone is always giving up the ghost(committing suicide). Or someone next to you, waking up in the middle of the night from terrifying screams of whatever is after them. I grasped at anything to help me overcome my despair. Drugs didn't help. I turned to Islam and lived as a Muslim for 17 years, but that didn't help either. I didn't realize I was filled with the very spirit God was against. The spirit that denies Jesus Christ died for the sins of the world. 1 John 4: 14-15, And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.
In 1994, a young lawyer fresh out of law school took on my appeal. We became close, more than a normal lawyer and client relationship. Seeing I had no support system, he introduced me to his parents, as they became the loving parents I never had. They visited faithfully and love me like a son. She would always tell me, James God loves you. They were Christians, I was Muslim. We were on different sides of town in our beliefs. That grown was shaken in 1998 when God sent me a woman from thousands of miles away. Hannah was from Denmark. An ad was placed in the local newspaper there with my story, asking for a pen pal. Hannah found the ad. Sitting at her kitchen table, she sensed the Holy Spirit saying," Go to that condemned man".
Six months later she left her job, family, and home and came to visit me on Florida's death row. When I asked her why she came, her reply was, Jesus love you James. My Jesus, she would always say. Making it personal. I didn't get it, but it was real to her. The spirit of her beloved Jesus was all over her. Yet I refused to receive it, why did I need her Jesus when I had Muhammad. She would smile and say, my Jesus rose from the grave just for you James.
She was so gentle and loving in her faith towards me. Finally, one day God's grace open my eyes to his love. He drew me to Himself (John 6:44. I realized that all my years of following Muhammad had left me without peace. Maybe Jesus would bring me His peace and take my pain away. I confessed this desire to Hannah, and on February 4, 2001, in that small cell, I asked Jesus to come into my life as my Lord and Savior. In that moment it was as if Jesus walk up to me and removed the chains of darkness and made me whole. I experienced what John 8:36 says, if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. Jesus freed me from my pain. Four years later on January 17, 2006, when my death sentence was overturned to a life sentence with parole.
For 22 years and 11 months, I had been waiting to die, but God had other plans. He not only gave me eternal life, but another chance at life. John 10:10 says, "That thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. Today, I am living a life in freedom through Jesus Christ. No matter what it is, He will bring peace to your mind, soul and move you from death row to the front row, where life begins. May God bless you and keep you.
06/15/2020 (testimony continued)
Dear Sister Soldier
Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.
From my earliest memories upon my arrival on death row, I remember sitting on my bed and memorizing 2 Timothy 3:16, "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness". While in all honesty, I'm sure I was looking for comfort in the midst of my hurt, pain and discomfort. Today I know that verse to be true and understand that scripture is a key plumb line in my life.
It was through scripture I learned of God's unconditional love, acceptance and desire to forgive me. While searching for a purpose, scripture revealed that God's desire isn't only that my life has meaning, but that I also experience His absolute best. That Apostle Paul wrote in Philippians 1:10, "So that you may be able to discern what is bast and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ". In every major decision, scripture has provided direction and insight to help confirm God's will for me. Maybe most importantly, I have learned that, even had I turned away and not accepted God's purpose and desire for my life, scripture teaches that He doesn't remove His call or His desired purpose, "For God's gifts and His call are irrevocable" Acts 11:29. Knowing this brings comfort and reassurance, as God's work in my life isn't about me it's about His love, His forgiveness, His grace and His restoration.
The days ahead will bring new adventures, new challenges and new opportunities. I've learned the best indicator of the future is the past. So I am rest assured that the God who has been faithful in all our yesterdays will be faithful in all our tomorrows. And we know that because, All things work together for the good. You have a blessed day of walking in the blessing of the Lord.