~To the Prodigal, the Wayward one, the Runaway~

Dear child,

 

 

Why are you looking for love?

 

Gone. She left, that’s what they said. I read the words over and over, they spent the remainder of my weekend at the barn bouncing around inside my head. I wasn’t shocked, she’d always been the rebellious one of the family, the one to act out in wild fashions to make sure the statement she was trying to make was made and heard. Angry, was what was felt at the moment—the pain she would be causing her parents would be unforgettable—the scars she was going to leave in everyone else’s life would deep and would take a long while to fade. Furthermore, the mess she is making for herself is one that will take what would seem like forever to be cleaned up.

I’ve heard of people running away, but never knew anyone who did something like that. Most times it seems like if they’re running away it’s because they’re running from something, obviously, or to something—a supposedly better life, money, “more love”, more space, etc. I think at the end of the day it comes down to a lack of something. “There’s a God shaped hole in all of us, and the restless soul is searching, there’s a God shaped hole in all of us, and it’s a void only He can fill”. I know all of my non-religious readers are probably going to be rolling their eyes and blowing this off—and that’s fine—you are all entitled to your opinions. A lack of God’s presence in your life leaves you empty, and feeling an eternal type of longing. You want to be rid of that feeling of emptiness, so you find ways and things to fill in the emptiness. Some turn to drugs, alcohol, sex, money, etc. Others turn to running away, as if this empty longing is a cloud chasing them, and they think if they just keep leaving, it’ll go away. But it won’t. Running helps absolutely nothing.

 

 

Why are you still searching as if I’m not enough?

 

I have had people ask me before, “Why do you seem so content, so happy where you are? I’m never happy or fully content.” Knowing God is knowing peace. That hollowness in you is filled with a certain feeling of peace and security you won’t get by running or doing drugs, sex, alcohol, etc.  All you need, all you’re looking for, it’s not found in Church(oh, going will definitely help you find what it is that you’re missing), it’s found in the Bible. In Christ, the Holy Spirit, God—the Holy Trinity. At some point those still searching despite everything God is doing or has done to bring you to him, have to stop to ask, “Why am I still searching, what am I searching for and when does this searching end?” When you stop to ask those questions and answer them, you might find you hear the voice of the Holy Spirit—it’s been talking to you all along.

 

To where will you go child?
Tell me where will you run, to where will you run?

You’ll run to what looks most appealing, to what looks like greener grass—but in the end that feeling of being empty? It grows and grows and eventually a feeling of being lost joins it, after all, misery loves company. You will try things to make these feelings not go away, because deep down you know they won’t go away, but to make yourself forget about them. Yet, at the end of each day, alone in your bed at night, with nothing but your thoughts to keep you company—a single tear shall fall—because that feeling will still be there, and it will turn into an ache that stays with you for the rest of your life until you find your way back into the arms of your Father. You will have blazed a trail riddled with the hurt feelings of those you affected along the way—their scars that you inflicted will never fade and the bridges you’ll have burnt may never be fully repaired. There will always be love felt by all for you—but the memory of that lasting pain will also always be there and that is something you will have to come to terms with. Where will you run then, when it all comes to a head? Where will you go when that ache starts to grow stronger and all your actions start to catch up and weigh on you?

 

’cause I’ll be by your side wherever you fall

 He’s always there with you—no matter how far away you may decide to go or how long you are gone—he never truly leaves. He waits, silently, sadly, longingly, for you to wake up and realize all that you’ve done. He waits with arms open wide for you to fall into His holy embrace and beg for the forgiveness He’s been so desperate to give you. On those nights, when you feel like there is no hope, like you’re a lost cause and there’s no point—remember this and remember Him—He’s waiting—by your side—always and forever.

 

In the dead of night whenever you call

 

I know you and I know you will say, “I have called out and I never heard anything”. He hears your calls and he answers when He feels you’re ready to listen to what He has to say. When you are ready to call and truly accept His help and listen to the truth He has for you—He will answer—but only when you’re mind and heart are ready. Don’t give up and don’t stop calling, hold strong to that small shred of faith you have and don’t ever let it go—life is only just getting started for you.


And please don’t fight these hands that are holding you
My hands are holding you

 

When He holds you close, don’t fight it, don’t struggle to get away—His hands are holding you—embrace Him back. When you feel that gentle tug or hear those soft whispers—listen and don’t fight. You are alone despite what you might be thinking. You are in over your head and you have no one down there for you—despite what you may feel. Don’t fight His hands when they’re holding you.

 

 

 

 

You have caused more pain than what you may know right now—you are burning bridges and leaving deep scars—the love for you is still present—but the forgiveness will take time to happen—and for some may never happen. Running doesn’t help anything. Artificial fixes don’t help anything. You have made your decision and now you need to reap the consequences for them. I do not hate you for what you have done, the lies you have told, the accusations you spit out or the venomous words you sputter—but the anger is strong and the forgiveness will take years to come. Remember the story of the Prodigal Child from Sunday School—remember every Bible Study we’ve had—all the verses you’ve memorized—hold them close to your heart and turn to them when you feel truly lost.

 

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