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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

I Stand on the Hill

As I stand on my doorstep and look forlornly down the street, I think of the father who saw his son from yet a far off place and ran to greet him. How long he waited -- hoping, and undoubtedly praying, for his son's safe return. How long will I wait? Will my son ever come home -- literally to my arms, or figuratively to His Father's arms?

I could rewrite my last blog again, and it would still be relevant all these months later. Only my now 18-year-old son is no longer living in the house. He is rarely attending his last semester in school. His school counselor called and indicated he will not be able to graduate as he lost a needed class credit due to truancy. He admits to using drugs. He does not work -- though at times has money to spare (?!). He is less and less in contact with me, and rarely in contact with his dad. At times he reaches out to his younger brother, but since he is only able to see him if he comes to visit with us at home or out with us for a meal, that isn't happening anymore either.

I think again of that father in Luke 15. How did he cope? How did his wife cope? I don't remember her being mentioned in the story. Obviously life went on. The father lived and worked alongside his other son. But yet he waited and hoped and prayed.

There are times my heart is so broken that I don't know how to pray. I don't know what to say. I can only cry, "Lord, Lord." Or sob quietly. Or even wail. And then, I step off the doorstep and continue to live life...working, running errands, spending time with my husband and youngest son. But it's not quite right. And, even though it's incredibly busy (often too much so), it's not quite full.

Jesus tells about a shepherd who leaves his 99 sheep and goes to find 1 who went astray. He shares about a woman who lost 1 of her 10 coins and looks high and low until she finds it (then rejoices and tells everyone around her). And of course, there's the father and his prodigal son. I know these are all examples of God's amazing love for us and the rejoicing when what was once lost is then found. Jesus speaks of the rejoicing in heaven when His children turn to Him.

I want to rejoice as the woman with the coin. I want to throw a party as the father did for his returning son. I want to place my lamb in my arms and carry him back to the flock. What if that time does not come for me? What if I wait, hope and pray, and the Lord's answer is something else entirely? What if, as I look for His answer as only to be "my son coming home", that I miss the real answer He has for me?

Isaiah 42:16 says, "I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them."

Though I often feel lost, hurt, and in despair, I know I am not foresaken. I have to admit, I forget that sometimes -- my emotions take over, and I wonder where God is. The path is indeed dark and unknown. I feel completely blind as to the future. I long for the smooth road. But I am called to trust. When I do, I remember all that God has done for me in the past. He has always shined a light on my path. At my weakest he has made me strong and given me a hope when I have been hopeless. I have no reason to trust He won't do so again. He is the same today, yesterday and forever.

"Lord, when I can't think of what to pray, may I just remember Your words, and pray them back to You. May I turn to the direction of the light rather than wallowing in the darkness. May I remember that YOU love my son as the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the prodigal son. These are illustations of YOUR love for my Cody. When nothing else gives me comfort, may that knowledge be enough."


Dawn said...

I'm so glad I saw your comment over at Groovy's place. I am so sorry you are going through this, and it is so painfully familiar. Kev is 33 now and on his second round in Teen Challenge. His wife has stuck it out with him, though she's had a hard time getting over the understandable anger. They are together this week-end for the first time in almost a year. He is learning so much about himself and why the last TC experience wasn't enough. I could so relate to this post. Blessings! I would love to talk to you in person.

Dawn said...

BTW, I am not private any more - thankfully.

Dawn said...

I just read this again, and the previous one. I could have written them, though not nearly so well. How I remember those painful high school nights when I would sit in the living room and watch for his lights to come down the cul de sac. My goodness, we never knew he was doing the things he was going. But I could never give up, never kick him out. I went to work as a refuge. He almost died 5 times in two years. I trust that Cody doesn't go this far. I wish Kev could talk to him, though I know that they rarely listen to anyone, thinking it could not and will not happen to them.

Know that I am here any time.

You May Say I'm A Dreamer said...

I don't know how I found your blog other than I think the Lord led me to it through Dawn who found my blog! My heart breaks for you and I truly feel your pain. I too have a precious son who has been involved with drugs (heroin) and the experiences we have had together have been painful and at times almost unbearable. All I can say is continue to pray for this sweet son of God and know that your prayers will help him, even if you don't see the "fruits of your labors"...Your faith is strong and your heart is pure, I can tell just from this one post! I promise I will keep you and him in my prayers.

These precious souls DO break our hearts. But through it all, I have learned many precious and plain truths that I may never have learned any other way. I hope and pray that you will continue to have the strength to do exactly what you did...step off the door step and continue to live life! It sounds like you have amazing faith. Although my son is clean (for now) I never cease to pray for him and any other child who is caught in this hideous trap of addiction. May God bless you, your family and especially your sweet Cody!

Anonymous said...

Michelle, Sending prayers and love to you and family.

Sharon Lynne said...

Hi Michelle,

I'm so glad you are back to least a little bit!

My heart goes out to you regarding your son. When my son turned 18 he started experimenting with drugs. I also felt that I had no idea where this "road" was going. His habits were affecting the whole household. He was home for awhile and out for a few days, then back home again. (back and forth) My husband and I disagreed how to handle him. It was the most difficult thing I've been through.

I didn't feel like other moms...and felt I had little in common with normal folk. ALONE is how one feels.

He has matured out of the drugs, but still utilizes pot. We are in a new chapter.

If you want to email any requests, my email is:

I will keep Cody in my prayers.