Hope for Prodigals

Discussion in 'Thoughts for Today' started by CoffeeDrinker, Jul 12, 2017.

  1. Wednesday, July 12, 2017

    Hope for Prodigals
    "They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us."
    —1 John 2:19

    I remember when pot-bellied pigs were quite popular, and I knew someone who had one as a pet. He told me he would take his pig to the beach, but he had to put sunscreen on him because pigs can get sunburned.

    You could take a pig and shower him, put some nice cologne on him, and even make a little outfit for him. You could sit him down at your table and have a meal together. But the first chance that pig gets, he will make a beeline from your dining room table back to the slop, because that is where he really wants to be. Why? Because he is a pig, and he wants to hang out with his pig friends and do pig things.

    In the same way, a prodigal always will return home, because a prodigal is a child of God who has gone astray. But a pig always will go back to his element.

    We all know people who have supposedly fallen away from the Lord. Maybe we have seen them make a decision for Christ and even noticed some immediate changes in their lives—or what appeared to be changes. Then a few weeks later they bailed. They threw in the towel and fell away. And we said, “That is so sad. They backslid.”

    It just might be that many of these people never were true believers to begin with. A true believer always will come back home eventually. But a person who is not a true believer never will. If they never come back, they never were true believers. If they do, they probably were.

    There is a difference between the person who stumbles spiritually and wants to get up again and the person who could really care less. Which one are you?

    Copyright © 2017 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved.
     
    Egraine likes this.
  2. Sometimes when people fall they are so shattered and broken and lacking hope that they can't get up. That's when those of us who find our brothers and sisters lying at the side of the road, need to extend our hand and help pull them back up onto their feet. When some have fallen so many times that they feel they are beyond hope, we need to try and pick them up, give them an injection of love and hope, and a large dose of faith. Sometimes it is not because people do not want to return to God, it is because they simply do not have a scintilla of strength left with which to pick themselves up. This is where it is time for us to take action and help. I am not suggesting that we invest our entire resources and strength in this endeavor, but I am suggesting that we do not ignore someone who is broken and has been left to die in a ditch at the side of the road. Sometimes just picking them up and helping them dust themselves off and pointing them in the right direction with a few kind words is all that is needed. It may not seem like a lot, but to someone who is down for the count, it can mean everything. We cannot be responsible for every person that has fallen, but we can try to put people on their feet if our paths cross theirs. And as Coffeedrinker points out, if they turn away from the Lord and fail to take advantage of the opportunity, then perhaps they are among the truly lost. As individuals there is only so much that each one of us can do.
     
    From Pieces To Peace and CoffeeDrinker say Amen and like this.
  3. It saddens me. I hate thinking of people this broken and sad.
     
  4. CoffeeDrinker: Yes, it is sad. And it is worse yet when they don't want anyone's help. It is very hard to walk away when someone doesn't want your help, but they do have their free choice. I think that if we look at our lives we can all find a time when we felt broken. I'm sure that you have felt like this at least once in your life or you wouldn't feel so sad thinking about someone else in this state.
     
    Cturtle and CoffeeDrinker say Amen and like this.
  5. My ex-husband says he is broken and down and out since I left him. It hurts me so badly to see him so broken. Yet he was a very mean emotionally abuse husband. I cannot understand why he is so broken when he had me for 28 years and abused me daily. It makes no sense, but it still hurts me to see him hurting, but I needed out of that marriage. 28 years of constant mental abuse. It was bad.
     
  6. CoffeeDrinker: I was in a similar situation many years ago. The thing with abusers is that a lot of them do it almost on auto-pilot, and when you finally have enough and leave them, they are astounded because they are so totally unaware of their own behaviour. I have heard similar stories from others where the abuser is gob-smacked when they are left because of their habitual abuse. I only know that allowing yourself to remain in an abusive situation that shows no sign of ever getting better is certainly not the answer. A person whose abuse is so embedded that they don't even realize that they are doing it, seems to me a poor candidate for rehabilitation.

    I too felt terrible, terrible guilt. I made sure that he got a place to live, and I moved him in and set up his household while he was still numb with the shock of what was happening to him. After more than a decade of neglect, abuse, and his adulteries, I was still committed to my vows. But then he actually left me to die because he refused to take me to the hospital this one day. The long and short of it is that I ended up being clinically dead for almost a minute because he refused to help me - he opted to go to work instead of calling 911. Yet he was shocked when I decided to leave him after 13 years of all manner of abuse. I was able to tolerate pretty much anything, but when someone is willing to allow you to die, then I feel like I am in danger and cannot trust that person any further.

    Still, I felt sorry for him. His tears were painful to me. I did the best I could for him practically and financially, but after risking my life so blatantly and deliberately, I was done. A few decades later he came to me in financial crisis, and I helped him out a lot to get him back on his feet and help find him a job. Interestingly the moment he got what he needed from he, he once again cut off all communication, but that's just the way he was like. I bear him no ill will even though he almost cost me my life. Forgiveness, I've found, is more for my benefit than anyone else's, so learning to forgive was well worth the effort.

    I still feel bad for him. I still feel guilt for any pain I caused, and I don't think this will ever change. I understand why you are feeling guilty, but please do not let it cloud your judgement and lead you back into a terrible situation where the abuse is very likely to continue. It could cost you your life - it almost cost me mine - in fact, technically I was dead and in those moments it is my opinion that death did indeed us part. Once you understand that a degree of guilt is always going to be with you to one degree or another, it allows you to see your situation more clearly.

    As always in these situations my experience has taught me the importance of seeking professional counselling both from secular and from church sources. You have many things swirling around in your head and heart right now, and there is nothing better than speaking to a professional counsellor and a priest or minister. It makes such a big difference especially if you are second guessing yourself, which is what most people tend to do at this time.

    I will pray for your happiness and for a resolution that is best for all concerned.

    Hugs ..... Egraine
     
    CoffeeDrinker likes this.
  7. I will NEVER go back. It was bad. He is a diagnosed Narcissist. They are such self involved mean people. He got all his fuel and energy from mentally tearing me down. I have no idea how I survived and walked away normal. But I too, hurt for him because he hurts. I forgive him and I hold no anger toward him at all. But I still hurt for him. Makes no sense to me.
     
  8. CoffeeDrinker: I too have been victimized by a Narcissist for 8 years. It was horrible. I read that it is the only personality disorder where there is NO cure, and that all Narcissists manage to do is leave a trail of people with PTSD in their wake. I truly sympathize with you. I hope you can heal from this terrible experience.

    Blessings and divine healing through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

    Egraine.

    PS: My narcissist was someone I had to work with for 8 years.
     
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  9. I tell people all the time I have PTSD. That's funny, but it's true. When I hear a man talk ugly to a woman I will break out in a sweat and have to leave. I cannot even watch any type of movies with abuse. I do believe God can cure and heal anyone, but you are right. It's the one disorder that they say has no cure. His doctor told me to continue with the divorce because I was the enemy to him and I always would be. It's a very strange mental disorder.
     
  10. I am sorry you have to go through this. Narcissists have one feature all in common - no matter what, they always believe that they are right and everyone else is wrong. Always. And once they decide that you are on their dark side, this is where you will be relegated in their minds forever. Yet, if you ask them, they will convince you that they are the consummate victim. I spent my 8 years barely holding onto my sanity when I worked with the narcissist at my job. People kept quitting their positions and leaving, yet management kept protecting this person (I have no idea why). Innocent people were being seriously harmed, and careers were being destroyed, but the narcissist had full rein until one day her protector retired. Once this happened, the jig was up. And the multiple complaints of the other employees were finally taken seriously. The solution was the one I had suggested all along - find a task where she works alone in isolation and all will be well. So that's what they did. Finally, peace, but too late for me and my cohorts who hung in there for many years of the abuse.

    I have long ago forgiven her. I pity her self-deluded state and hope that someday, somehow God will help her see herself in her true light. in truth God is the only being who could possibly help individuals who have this problem since it defies treatment by medical science or psychological therapy. How awful it must be to need to be right all the time, and battle all the time for petty things that are truly meaningless. It's so sad, especially when you end up having no friends and no one who wants to have anything to do with you. Ah well, as with all such things, it is in God's hands. There's little to nothing we can do about it except steer clear and protect ourselves.
     
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