June 24, 2016

The Prodigal

At an event I sat with a fellow believer who ministers to the homeless. He introduced me to one of his acquaintances and after the man left Jim encouraged me to write a human interest story about the man. The man and his wife, who was recovering from a miscarriage, had been homeless for two months. They recently found housing and were trying get their children back from social services. I told Jim I had reservations about writing a story because the man reeked of alcohol. Disappointment spread across Jim’s face, “Really, was he drinking?” The real story of a prodigal is not that a man is homeless and wanting to eat pods with the pigs…the testimony and story lies in a man coming home to the Father.

1 comment:

Steve Corey said...


-----My prodigal days did not end smoothly. I understand now the greater honor I would have had for the Lord had I just laid my addiction aside and walked away from it for good. But I did not understand then how to do that. Part of my addiction was an emotional problem. Emotions are difficult to control, so they escape the hand easily.
-----I am thankful I did not judge myself a lost cause the first time I jumped off the wagon. I saw it being rather like a boy trying to do his first series of chin ups. If he could only do two and a half and then turns loose of the bar, that he does three with his next try matters more. So I noted how long it was before I climbed back onto the wagon. And once back on the wagon, I noted how long it was before I jumped off again.
-----I am sure anyone who may have been watching in hopeful anticipation wrote me off as a fool desirous of pods and pigs. But I just kept a determined (if not entirely strong) grasp on the Lord and consciously, purposefully measured each time I was off the wagon and each time I was back on. I did not crush myself for being off. I just kept feeding my mind reasons for desiring to be on the wagon whether or not I was actually on it. Other people can not see this kind of inner activity. They can only see your relationship with the either wagon or the muddy ground. And should they be a bit wise in their observations, they might watch long enough to measure the times as well. But probably not.
-----I aimed at shortening the time I was off the wagon and lengthening the time I was on it. I understood it as a soft-nosed, light-handed approach. I don’t know, maybe it was because I was lazy. But I knew the Lord knew my heart and understood both my effort and the direction which I was choosing. Today, when I see one fallen off a wagon, I remember my struggle. Should I get a chance to talk with him, I explain the times, the measurements, the chosen direction, and the grasp on the Lord. His mercy extends us that handle to hold. If we can do little else, holding that handle boldly will pull us through (that is, He will pull us through.) But we'll be the more damaged for it.
-----The prodigal son repented and left his sad estate to return home. Of the prodigal’s venture home we are told only that he arose and went. Jesus did not specify that he went straightway. Nor did He specify that the boy dawdled, like I did. It wasn’t relevant to the point that the son was not home until he was home.
-----I don’t consider myself at home today. I consider myself yet on the way. I still measure my times because I am perfected in God’s sight by His grace while I am yet only on my way out of sin in deed. But He tabernacles with me here in the wilderness, on the way home. He passes over my sinful condition to be here with me in the wilderness because I desire to proceed in the direction of home, not pining over my sinful condition, but rather rejoicing as I green up and bear a bit of fruit here and there.

Love you all,
Steve Corey