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pursuing the upward call with fear and trembling

just a 44 year old man seeking to share my meanderings with the world at large or the blogosphere at small

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Tackling the Prodigal

In my last post i talked about my major issues of pain and personal struggle spiritually/emotionally/relationally. The prodigal son story has always been a hard one for me. I know for most it is a heartening story of redemption renewal restoration and relationship regained. I have had a different take on it. I have identified most with the older brother in the story. For one reason because i am one in real life. Another is i felt alot like him and his attitude toward his father. I was always the *good one* growing up but of course that is a wide spectrum on a huge scale. Part of me was very scared to engage in wild behaior for what might happen to me, and yet deep within a part of me wanted to be able to act out and not care or worry about consequnces of what i did. I think I saw God, who of course represents the father, as being uninterested and uncaring towards me even bored with me. I tried to go through the motions of what a good boy does but my heart wasnt fully in it. I felt God knew this and so treatedf me as a reject who didnt desrve His affectiuon and love or personal time and interest. While God was always thrilled to see those who were prodigals come back to Him, He took no joy in me and even saw me as being like the salt with no flavor the pig who returns to its own vomit the doubleminded man who cant make up his mind. These are very harsh images but its an emotional response i have had toward this story.

A very troubling thing for me is how to let God mold me and transform me. I wanted to be a minister, in order to serve Him and be a helper to others. I wanted to be a servant. I have made bad choices for a number of years in personal,emotional and relational areas that have made me pay a price. Pleasure seeking has been at the root of my deepest issues. I think i tried to fabricate a fantasy world where because i suffered rejection and ridicule by females due to my acne and my emotional immaturity i would find a way to show I was just as manly and able to be sexually attractive as any other guy. So i sought avenues that allowed for this to happen. Massage parlors,. phone sex cyber sex and internal images that centered on sex and lust just as a hovering presence. i want to be clear that this all has taken palce while i have been a fully functioning adult, working fulltime going to college being involved in ministry both paid and volunteer and really bein gactively involved in sharing my faith in various ways by word and deed. It may sound a lil bizarre but it is what it is or was.

i share these things openly in order to be real and transparent and to enable otheers with similar stories to know they are not alone. i want to follow Jesus and i have this part of me that seeks addictive activities. Some scriptures seem to say i am caught in a vise that keeps me away from God and bound to my sinful nature and unable to be set free because i cant. Others give me the hoppe that God is gracious and forgiving and patient and bears with all the jumk helping me day by day to seek to pursue Him Jesus call to discipleship and losing my life and taking on His. Part of me feels so hopeless and alienated from God because of how many times al these years i have chosen my selfish desires or let fear strangle me and living in faith. I do not want to live with this attitude and a large part of me has a different one but these are the shadows i need to face up too. Suicide is a nonoption for me no matter how bleak things ever could feel. It isalot like having a fresh wound and then scar tissue covers it. At first the wound heals freshly and you feel it as though the wound didnt happen. But as time passes and the scar tissue hardens the sensation lessens and lessens. i feel like i have let spiritaul scar tissue take away my sensation of the leading of the Spirit in a lot of ways. i want to let the Spirit in and to lance the wound and heal me but the pain involved and the effort and work and energy that is needed seem to be not in ny reach or not in my emotional reservoir.

having said all this i will be gladly going to worship sunday involved in teaching sunda school and encouraging others. My desire is ultimately to live for God but I still fight HIm and resist and the tolol it takes is the fear and being stuck unable to just act on what i know His Word tells me.

I hope this does not come across as like i was throwing up my dirty laundry on the blogworld or anything i am just seeking to be naked before God and seek direction and hopefully His love and grace and Spirit to lead me to make the changes i need to make and have the energy and drive to keep at it despite all the curveballs and spitballs life throws at me. Thank you any and all who read this and so appreciate your thoughts prayers comments and well wishes. Praise God for He is holy and good!!! ALL THE TIME!!!!!!!!!!!


At 6:14 AM, Blogger gracie said...

Honesty removes any power that secrecy wielded with a sword of guilt. Keep it real!

At 9:54 AM, Blogger karen said...

Wow, Robert! I'm amazed and humbled by your post. You know how you come across?
Like a hero in the Bible. Human, honest, transparent, real.
You are always in my prayers.
God loves you passionately.

At 8:51 PM, Blogger Smitty said...

Wow...how honest you were. I don't think I could be that honest. I agree that being open with others and with God breaks down so many barriers. The cool thing about being honest with God is that you don't have to worry if He will still love you when it's all over. The best thing is that He DOES!! With other people, you never know what their response will be.

Just remember that through all of this there are people who are willing to listen and who are praying for you.

At 10:23 AM, Blogger bjk said...

It's like CS Lewis says....'we are far too easily satisfied'....you my friend are not going to be easily satisfied any longer.....Thanks for sharing and allowing us to be in this with you....


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