Over Christmas I ran out of wonder drugs, and tried to get my refills. My prescription company must have taken the holidays off, because it eventually took a little over three weeks before the scripts arrived. In the mean time, I had spoken with my doctor about the situation, and he expressed his grave concern about stopping the type of drugs that I had been on “cold turkey”. He encouraged me to try, however, since he was wanting to try to get me off of them in a couple of months anyway and I had already made it through a week and a half.
I made it through several more rough weeks, my parents and my in-laws all crammed into our house, Santa getting ready to do his thing, and my wife mad at me for one thing or another. She didn’t seem to get that I really was having to sweat through major withdrawals. My head felt like a nut in a nutcracker most of the time. I am just now starting to feel really good, more energetic, less drowsy, etc. No panic attacks or depression, actually my emotions feel very good, authentic, like me again.
Last Sunday, I told my Sunday school class that I had a praise report to share with them, being drug free for almost 3 1/2 weeks, etc. I wanted to tell them everything, but didn’t have time, but gave them the short version. Immediately afterward our teacher for the day, Greg, thanked me for sharing, and announced that we were deviating from the quarterly Sunday school lesson, and that he had something to share with us similar to what I had just mentioned. He went on to chronicle his battle with anxiety, and how he was learning to lean on God in order to make it through these tough times. His heart was broken, but in the midst of that I saw God reaching out to me, immediately reaffirming His love and concern through Greg, showing me that He does indeed number the very hairs on our head, that He cares for us, and is there with us in a very real way. I really needed to hear that right then, really did.
So, I have been wanting to read some of Henri Nouwen’s writings, and today happened upon a copy of “The Return Of The Prodigal Son” in the book store, and snapped it up so quickly that the sonic boom could be heard several blocks away…
I immediately went across the parking lot to a mexican restaurant, and commenced reading in between bites of Chile Relleno, and Chicken Quesadilla, with “a few” chips to go with my half gallon of salsa.
As I read the opening pages of this book, my heart felt as if it would break, because I have always felt like the Prodigal, the perpetual prodigal, leaving home, messing up, living in filth, only to finally arrive home and experience the Father’s embrace and hear His loving words, to experience His forgiveness. Those times of being away from God have always filled me with self-loathing, and despair, over what “could have been”.
As I climbed into my truck after my Nouwen siesta less than an hour ago, I turned the radio on to a local christian radio station, only to hear Dr. Joe Stowell talk about how good it is when as the Prodigal we finally come home, and rest in our Fathers arms…
Not sure why I began to write this, but I have decided to leave it here.