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But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.


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Luke You may know that the early morning, before dawn, is my time for being alone with the Lord and for writing. Approximately six weeks ago, I awoke with a burden to share with standers a prodigal's perspective on what their prodigal mate is experiencing. Two or three paragraphs were prepared that morning and added as a footnote to my wife's Charlyne Cares email devotional for the following day.

That second day we received an almost immediate response to this perspective. The following morning I awoke with another topic on my heart, and a second topic was addressed. This continued for over a month. Each day I thought I had done all God had for me to do, but the next morning another topic was flowing inside me almost faster than I could type. The positive response has been encouraging, but it pales when compared to a few responses received from another group: prodigals.

We are hearing, It is uncanny how close his life comes to mine, and This sounds like me. Although written to standers, Charlyne and I are asking God to use this book in the lives of prodigals seeking the way home. If you are a stander, this book is written just for you. If you are what we lovingly call a prodigal, based on Luke 15, my prayers go out to you. I have opened my prodigal life up to you. May you be encouraged that our Lord Jesus Christ knows the way home for you. Was it when I was driving away from our home, with my possessions crammed in the old blue Dodge, en route to a motel 20 miles away?

My sobbing wife could not see it, nor could you, but the pull homeward for a prodigal spouse becomes stronger with each trip we make to our vehicle, removing our possessions from the home where they should be. Nevertheless, like a determined swimmer working against the tide, we push on. Was it when I witnessed an accident on that same trip to the motel? Traffic was light on Stirling Road, and no one else had stopped, so I pulled over to render aid.

Was it when the victim asked for someone to call his wife, and I realized that I would have no wife to call? Was it when the investigating officer asked for my address, and I had to dig out the motel's card? Was it a week later when I received a thank you card from the wife of that recovering victim?

Did I first think about going home after I had moved into room at Cavey's Motel when I moved the bed so that light at night would come through the window, just like it did in our bedroom at home? Was my first thought about going home later that same day when I called the female coworker with whom I had become too close and discovered she had other plans that night?

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Was it when I ate alone? Was it when I tossed and turned, attempting to fall asleep, alone in a strange place? Did I first think about going home when I became involved in sin? Fun for a moment, but then I had to endure hearing the Holy Spirit call my name. And these are but the outer fringe of his works; how faint the whisper we hear of him! Who then can understand the thunder of his power? Job Did I consider going home that next morning when the thought of where I was living and the family I had rejected hit me like a dull thud as I awoke?

Did I think about home while I was searching for the least wrinkled white shirt, since I had no iron? Did I first think about going home that day when something happened at work and my first reaction was to call Charlyne and share it with her until I realized less than 24 hours before I had said there would be no more Charlyne? Did I think about going home that day at lunch when that female coworker reminded me how different we were and that we had no long term future together?

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Did I think about going home that evening when I exited I and headed for my motel where a darkened room awaited me, instead of continuing on north to a home with dinner in the oven and where a loving and faithful wife and three great kids could be found? The amazing part of it all is that I was explaining to my W what she was thinking, what she was doing, and almost in a timeline of when she was doing it.

I told her that in the beginning she wasn't able to handle the pressures that were being thrown at her, and her only way out in her mind was to run. The problems did not stop when she ran. They followed her. Now because they followed, she then thought the only way to rid of them, is to rid of me. Now because I kept interrupting her story, she could not do away with the problems.

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She made herself believe that I was a horrible person and that issues that happened in the past was what fueled her story in thinking this. She had to force herself to "hate" me. In this same time frame, she tried anything she could to eliminate me; to knock me down. She created lies, horrible lies that cut like a knife.

She described sexual scenes with the OM, in hopes that it would derail me, and cause me to stay down.


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With each time that she saw me stand back up, it only enraged her more. Which caused more lies, and very hateful acts toward me. I remained standing through it all. It was all lies. It was her way of trying to make the problem go away.

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The thing is she knew how to solve the problem, but didn't want to face the fact. She didn't want to admit her wrong doing. I heard the, "I love you, but I'm not in love with you", "too little, too late", "move on", "I'm a bad person, you deserve better". The same time she was telling me these things, she was crying inside, because it's not how she felt. It's not how she wanted things to be. She noticed early on that I was fighting for her. That I was not going to give up on her, but at the same time the "fog" had control of her.

There were countless times where she tried so hard to make people think her new life was amazing, and she was having the time in the world; but her conscience stepped in and reminded her of reality. She would lie in bed at night and cry herself to sleep, because her conscience would a picture of her son in her head and she knew she had walked out on him.

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As hard as she tried to believe she didn't, she knew it. She threatened with divorce, and started the process. She knew it was going to be very costly, and even tried to make me believe that she hired the best lawyer, and he would rake me through coals.


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  8. This is where I had to be strong and let her know that money and material things did not matter to me as much as saving my marriage. When she found out that I had gotten a lawyer she started to feel worried. Free Newsletters. Email Address. Subscribe to the selected newsletters. More Newsletters. Get the best from CT editors, delivered straight to your inbox! I wonder if, from Jesus' perspective, having a feast in one's honor is a blessing, but being asked to help host the banquet is a vastly greater gift.

    Wrestling with Angels. A list of her blogs can be found at CarolynArends. Reply on Twitter. Join in on Facebook. Issue: February , Vol. Current Issue. Read This Issue. Log in. February More from this Issue. Read These Next Trending. Speaking Out. The Other Prodigal Son. Subscribe to continue reading. Subscribe Already a subscriber?

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    The Prodigal Perspective