Healing A Wounded Heart – The Greatest Turning Point – By Thomas Koester

A wound where there are no tears is a wound that refuses to be healed.

A splinter under the skin, if left alone and ignored will eventually fester to a point of infection. Your body is rejecting the foreign object no matter how small it is, the pain calls out for your attention. If you ignore it too long, you could end up in the emergency room.

How about your heart?

Why ignore the pain?

Your heart is more precious than a finger; you can live without a finger, but you cannot live without your heart.

Sometimes we’re strong in the wrong things and at the wrong times, but to be weak in the right things brings true strength.

If you are hurting, in pain and are crushed in spirit, heart and soul, you may be at the greatest turning point of your life. You may actually be dwelling with God in a high and protected place, but you must share your tears with God, or you’ll be swallowed up in bitterness and left alone on earth.

Isaiah 57:15 (TLB)

“The high and lofty One who inhabits eternity, the Holy One, says this: I live in that high and holy place where those with contrite, humble spirits dwell; and I refresh the humble and give new courage to those with repentant hearts.”

Psalm 51:17 (HCSB)

“The sacrifice pleasing to God is a broken spirit. God, You will not despise a broken and humbled heart.”

Let God encounter your tears, after all, he is the Everlasting Father. Share it with him as your sacrifice. Come to him crushed, broken, betrayed, rejected and despised. He’s well acquainted with all of this and more. He allows it to touch your life, not to destroy you, but to draw you closer to himself.

God wants to father you…

Simply trust and turn to God and surrender your rights to be offended; your anger for being abused; your self hatred for being molested, raped and violated. God specializes with hurting and wounded people, and he’d rather be with you than with Kings and Queens.

The moment you offer up to God your tears and pain, you are with him in spirit and in truth.

Isaiah 42:3 (TLB)

“He will not break the bruised reed, nor quench the dimly burning flame. He will encourage the fainthearted, those tempted to despair. He will see full justice given to all who have been wronged.”

God won’t exploit your bruises. He’ll not snuff out your heart, even if its barely lit and barely alive.

God desires to be your daddy…

Give it all over to God. If you do, he’ll see to it that justice is served, and you can give your revenge a proper burial.

Then, you’ll knock down your walls of despair and make them into a dance floor and you’ll dance with your Abba, just as He’s always wanted too.

Don’t live with the pain. Time is not the Healer of all wounds, that’s lie.

God is the Healer of all wounds, and he’s waiting to hear your cries directed towards him, so that He may act.

“O my people in Jerusalem, you shall weep no more, for he will surely be gracious to you at the sound of your cry. He will answer you.” Isaiah 30:19

Give it up to God. Let it out and drink in God’s presence and love, and so be healed and restored.

Become healed in the name of Jesus! He came to seek out the lost and broken, and there is no one he cannot save or heal.

This may be one of your greatest days and greatest turning points.

Your heart and soul is God’s specialty!

It’s All Just Cornflakes – By Thomas Koester

Toni and I often talk about life changes, boundaries and priorities. The irony of facing death is that it forces you to a greater life and more meaningful living.

We actually do need to die in some respects to those things which promote death, and live more towards those things which promotes life. It’s like choosing between bacon, which I love, but it promotes death and beansprouts, which I hate, but promotes life. However, living a life on hospital food is certainly no fun either. So, we strive for a balance. And this is what my brush with death has taught me.

The movie “Click”, with Adam Sandler, has some great truths running through it, along with it’s great humor and satire.

Morty (The Angel of Death), played by Christopher Walken, tells Michael Newman, played by Adam Sandler, who’s fast-forwarding his way through life with an enchanted TV clicker, the following:

Morty: remarks:

“He’s always chasing the pot of gold, but when he gets there, at the end of the day, it’s just cornflakes.”

Towards the end if the movie (WARNING SPOILER ALERT) Michael finally gets it, and cries out, in the throughs of death:

Michael Newman: [dying] “Family, family… FAMILY COMES FIRST.”

Isn’t it so true? Family should come first, and I can promise, in the very moment when life is quickly, or slowly draining from your body, its family which first comes to your mind…

…”I want to see and hold my first grandchild from Josh and Jenny.”

“Oh my goodness, today is Tessa’s 24th Birthday, and I’m going to miss it!”

Tears began rolling down my face, as I began to see those moments of life fast-forwarding before me. And that was my wake up call, at 2:30 in the morning, Friday, October 11, 2013, as I sat in triage all alone, and when the reality of “heartattack” was suggested by the physician.

I wanted to exchange “I love you’s” with my wife and children one more time! I wanted to see who’d become my son, Jordan’s wife and welcome her into our family.

I confess that not one of my projects, clients or deadlines entered my mind, while facing the prospect of a heartattack. Not one more contract signings or one more insurances settlement; which, I have to face, is most likely what put me into the hospital in the first place.

I need to say “yes” to life and “no” to death. It’s the wrong choices in the those subtle decisions, which can soon pile up into a health disaster. It is all those times, when the tyranny of less important things over rules the more significant things of life.

“Let your yes mean yes, and your no mean no, anything more than that is from the Evil One.” Matthew 5:37 – Jesus of Nazareth

I may be wrong, but I don’t think striving to properly love your family, keeping your promises; being home ontime for dinner, or kissing your wife and kids good bye in the morning, has put anybody into the hospital.

Proverbs 4:23 says it best: “Guard your heart more than anything else, because the source of your life flows from it.”

It is the redeemed heart, where God lives, which is our source of life. This too is where our families live and dwell. This is also where the love of our life dwells. Work should never enter our hearts the way God and our loved ones do, for it will always push God, family and our loved ones out. Guard your heart more than anything else!

Our missedplaced priorities will always attack what truly matters to our hearts, and, if ignored, may eventually cause a heartattack.

So, my new motto for life:

“Family, family… …FAMILY COMES FIRST.”

In this, we find all the treasures of life, and it is those relationships and memories, which are worth living for.

After all, everything else, “at the end of the day is just cornflakes!”

Where Have All The Good Men Gone? – By Thomas Koester

“Where have all good men gone, and where are all the gods?

Where’s the streetwise Hercules to fight the rising odds?

Isn’t there a white knight upon a fiery steed?

Late at night, I toss and I turn and I dream of what I need

I need a hero

I’m holding out for a hero till the end of the night

He’s gotta be strong, and he’s gotta be fast, and he’s gotta be fresh from the fight

I need a hero

I’m holding out for a hero till the morning light

He’s gotta be sure, and it’s gotta be soon, and he’s gotta be larger than life…” Lyrics by Bonnie Tyler

“In peace nothing so becomes a man as modest stillness and humility; but when the blast of war blows in our ears, then imitate the action of the tiger; stiffen the sinews, disguise fair nature with hard favored rage. . .” William Shakespeare

We live to fight for others; dammit, there’s no time for cowardice of heart or the indulgence of sorrow and pity…we have no time for what might have been, but only for what must be done! …Stop licking your wounds, get’m healed by Christ himself then back into the fight we go!

We men, must in great hast, understand the times in which we live. It is of no accident or coincidence that you’ve been born in such infamous days. You will not survive what lies ahead unless you ready yourself, strengthen your heart and clear your mind of worry.

Your very soul is witnessing your actions; your wife and kids are watching; angels are gathering and demons are unsettled.

Become the man you’ve been destined and chosen to be, and give your God his due or die trying.

Our warfare is not against men and politics; we’re not battling flesh and blood, minorities or extremist; our fight is with spiritual wickedness in high places and unseen principalities; evil puppeteers preying on the weakness of mortal men, enticing them with absolute power to cause absolute corruption.

Pay attention! If you refuse to battle the spiritual darkness of our time you’ll be swept up into it’s evil, for neutrality is equality with Darkness and bystanders will soon become backsliders.

“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” Edmund Burke

Good men, do something! Doing nothing is an abandonment of your masculine soul and God given role in this world. There are only two kingdoms, the Kingdom of Darkness and the Kingdom of Heaven. Your convictions and actions dictate to which Kingdom you belong and not your “good” intentions.

Turn your gaming and playtime into the prayers of warriors and saints. Act like the heros of our ancient faith, who’ve never seen their victories in the land of the living, but gave their lives nonetheless. It is they which are in the heavens, cheering us towards glory and final victory.

“As it goes, everyone will receive what his actions in life have cultivated. Whoever has labored diligently and patiently to do what is right—seeking glory, honor, and immortality—God will grant him endless joy in life eternal. But selfish individuals who make trouble, resist the truth, or sell out to wickedness will meet a very different fate—they will find fury and indignation as the fruit of living in the wrong.” – Romans 2:6-8 (VOICE)

Start doing what is right and true; do it with everything you’ve got. What you do, or not do, has eternal consequence.

Say: “goodbye” to selfishness and passivity and say: “hello” to glory, honor and immortality!

Earn your crowns, so that you’ll have something to lay down at the feet of your King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

There is no room for second place winners in the Halls of Heaven.

“Remember, there is only one foundation, the one already laid: Jesus Christ. Take particular care in picking out your building materials. Eventually there is going to be an inspection. If you use cheap or inferior materials, you’ll be found out. The inspection will be thorough and rigorous. You won’t get by with a thing. If your work passes inspection, fine; if it doesn’t, your part of the building will be torn out and started over. But you won’t be torn out; you’ll survive—but just barely.” 1 Corinthians 3: 12-15 (MSG)

“Cowards die many times before their deaths; the valiant never taste death but once.” William Shakespeare

We need men to be men, transitioning into warriors and not into women.

Where have all the good men gone?

He’s you! I dare you to come out from hiding.

God Is Live Right Now – By Thomas Koester

“Did you know that God is wirelessly available this very moment, with unmatched bandwidth from Heaven’s Throne? God has infinitely more knowledge than Alexa. He has more wisdom than Siri…”

God does desire your worship of him, but worship is not an end in itself; it’s not the pinnacle of what you have to give the crazed Lover of your soul. He’s after your heart. Your heart is what he wants from you. For without it, your worship is empty and unpleasing to him.

God is not happy with only raised hands, bowed heads and pretty choruses — he’s not impressed with your Sunday’s best, and part-time devotion!

He’s poured out all his pent up wrath against sin on His very own Son, so that he can pour out all his love on you. He’s found a way to make you his very own and desires to be the sole occupant of your heart. He wants your desire to match his Son’s desire to be in him, so that together, Father and Son may dwell in you!

What will it take for you to cut out and remove what is useless and self-destructive to your precious heart and soul?

Is not your life hard enough, empty enough, lonely enough that you’ll go on without God?

You want all these things; all the answered prayers and open doors, but are you really pursuing God, or simply what you want from him?

He’s not behind the doors for which you so wearily push against; earnestly seeking safety, comfort and security. He’s not playing hide and seek with you, he wants to be found as your One and Only Lover and Everlasting Father.

Only in returning to him, will you find everything you are truly seeking and desiring.

Pray to receive him. Climb over every obstacle to find Him, and not what your flesh cries out for, which by the way are only temporal remedies of an eternal desire. God’s promise is that he will be found, if you seek him and him alone with your whole heart.

But perhaps you haven’t done so, at least not with all your heart and strength, or else this note you’re reading wouldn’t be speaking so deeply to you. To honestly and sincerely turn towards God, is my dear friend the only change and the most important decision that you must make at this moment – at this very second.

All other passions, concerns and worries must be trained on the heart of your Fierce Lover and only Healer of your heart and soul. All other methods are simply medicating you. Worldly tips and techniques are not healing you, but masking the pain. “Time does [not] heal all wounds,” God does! God wants you restored and made whole, not medicated.

You want to talk about hands-free devices?

Did you know that God is wirelessly available this very moment, with unmatched bandwidth from Heaven’s Throne? God has infinitely more knowledge than Alexa. He has more wisdom than Siri. We 21st Century Christian are so distracted, but not with idols made of wood and stone, but with artificial intelligence (A.I.)!

We crave Idols that talk back, that hear our every word that answer our immediate questions! Yet the God of Creation, the very One who knows you by name, and has counted every strand of your hair, and has collected like diamonds and precious jewels, each and every tear you’ve shed, waits patiently for your devotion and your “signing in.”

He’s far greater than LinkedIn and has greater opportunities than Ziprecruiter. He wants more than your marketshare and algorithms — He wants all of you; body, mind and soul, but especially your whole heart.

God fills your heart, but the Internet, well, it leaves holes in your heart and never, absolutely never fills your heart as God can. The internet is designed to keep you empty, shallow and alone, causing you to need and crave things more and more.

God is not after your money. He’s not marketing you — He’s trying to love you like you’ve never been loved before. He wants to update and download into the center of your being and fillup your memory with images of Heaven that you’ll never find on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest or Twitter.

Did I mention how much I needed to hear this?

My name is Thomas Koester, and I’m addicted to A.I. too. I need, more than I’d like to admit, the words that I’ve written in this article. I am convicted too!

Close this post. Log off Facebook. Shut down your devices. Lower the lights and open your heart to Him. Log into Heaven’s Throne, and tune into God’s presence and scroll up to His homepage, so that you may truly see and truly hear, so that you may truly live!

God is live right now, and his livefeed is where you’ll find real life and all that you’ve been longing for…

…I’m signing in.

When Truth is Lost Love is Lost – By Thomas Koester

Evil is most dangerous, not when it hides in obscurity, but when it is plainly flaunted; when it dances in the light and no one seems to care.

As Martin Luther King Jr. has once said:

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

When evil that has been exposed by light, and is darkened by our indifference then even love has little hope of driving out hate.

Our society has completely flipped. What was once evil has become good, and what was once good has become evil.

Vladimir Lenin, was a Russian communist revolutionary, politician and political theorist. He clearly understood how to change truth into lies and lies into truth.

“Give me four years to teach the children and the seed I have sown will never be uprooted.” Vladimir Lenin – April 22, 1870 – January 21, 1924

And so, truth becomes lost to our children, as does the meaning of love.

Sex is no longer the act of consummating marriage, but is an uncommitted, casual contact between two, maybe three or more humans. Sex has become merely a recreational act and is void of meaning, truthfulness and love. When truth, and the consequences of ones actions have been removed, so also is the true meaning of love removed from relationships, our families, communities; all the way to the highest offices of the land.

Ralph Keyes, a notable author and speaker, has said in his book, The Post-Truth Era: Dishonesty and Deception in Contemporary Life:

“We are living in a post-truth era.”

He further writes:

“…This is post-truth. In the post-truth era, borders blur between truth and lies, honesty and dishonesty, fiction and nonfiction. Deceiving others becomes a challenge, a game, and ultimately a habit. Research suggests that the average American tells lies on a daily basis. These fibs run the gamut from “I like sushi,” to “I love you.”

There is no more denying the fact that 85 to 90 percent of America’s News Agencies are no longer after truth, but salacious morsels of lies, misstatements, innuendos, rumors and gossip, all of which are used to create and shape stories or events. This propels politicians or ideologies towards unpopular agendas that we all allow to become law, and not necessarily in favor of the Republic, nor it’s political, economical or educational future.

Facts, truth and context are ingredients that are purposely left out of important stories, as truth may become too damaging or too politically incorrect, or it may be too offensive. Ideology has become more important than truth. Hate, not love is purposely weaponized to move agendas that are void of common sense and common decency. Love, honor and respect are nowhere in sight and are replaced with lies and cover ups.

So, out of “sensitivity, we lie. For the sake of political ambition, we lie. For the sake of legislation, we lie. For the sake of “National Security,” we lie. We lie and lie about all these significant nation and societal changing events.

For example, legislation that delivers health insurance for the uninsured, but then impacts those with health insurance, which in turn causes them to lose the insurance they had. And, their doctor? Well, he had to take an early retirement, due to oppressive regulations and reduction in pay.

This happened under the guise of “truth” and “fairness?” The politicians used lies to force an “Affordable” Healthcare Care system, which by design, became an unaffordable healthcare system that would eventually force us all into a single-payer system of socialized redistributive medical services.

The Bible says, in Mathew chapter 5, verse 37:

“Let your yes mean yes, and your no mean no. Anything more than this comes from the evil one.”

So, in matters of oaths and speaking truth, if we say yes, but mean no, or say no, but mean yes, our words come from the evil one – from the dark side.

We are all capable of lying. But,when a society accepts lies and miss-truths from its leadership, tenured educators, politicians and news outlets and cable networks, the whole of our culture and society follows suit, and we then become a Nation of liars and therefore become enslaved to lies. Lies leads a people to slavery and not freedom. Lies leave us uninformed.

A notable politician and former presidential candidate has said:

“We want people to be uniformed but compliant.”

…Hmm, uninformed? …Compliant?

…In other words, politicians want us, no, they demand that we accept lies and ignore truth, and if we become “compliant,” we shall have peace. People, this is straight from the Father of Lies!

You see, when truth can no longer be tolerated, or is too politically insensitive, we allow ourselves to become uninformed. And, if uninformed, we then become compliant, as there are no boundaries between truth and lies. No more ethical “black and white” as everything becomes gray and meaningless.

Relativism is replacing realism. Reality TV is actually, unreality TV, portraying itself, and selling itself as the new norm, as the “new truth.”

When truth is lost, love is lost. Because love, real love, requires truth. Real love is colorful, not gray, and sadly, the days are becoming more and more gray.

To be uninformed and compliant is the definition of slavery. For you become a slave to whatever and whomever has mastered you.

If you fight for Truth, you are fighting for Love too.

Truth or Lies?

The choice is yours….Choose Truth and Love wins also.

The Cancellation of All Curses – Thomas Koester

For over the past three decades, it has been my passion learning about the wounds we’ve all suffered during our youth and formative years.

It’s not what will happen to you, which will change your life, I spoke out one night of lecturing …but rather what has happened long ago, which has already changed your life.

While young and innocent, most of us knowingly or unknowingly have made life-changing vows or agreements while in the midst of abuse or emotional, psychological or physical harm and pain. These past hurts or wounds, while eliciting powerful emotions of hate, anger bitterness or rage, have conjured dark agreements with the Father of Lies.

John 8:44 says that all lies come from the Father of Lies, who is the Devil.

It has been his strategy to get us to make these dark vows and then to live from them. He uses the most important people in our lives to originate these lies: we’re no good or unlovable or too ugly, too fat, or too skinny; we’re stupid, losers or failures. The list can be quite long and the voices of others soon become our voices, echoing selfdepreciating and ugly curses over our own hearts and minds.

Since these curses and lies were spoken over us at such a time when we were mythical, fanciful and magical at heart, that is, our ability to believe the unbelievable; the curses and lies became part of our identity and belief system. We end up living them out like prophecies written in ancient manuscripts.

These “prophecies” end up directing our lives and careers; our relationships and associations. To bring healing to these past wounds and nullify the agreements is a path which only few have taken. Even though freedom and wholeness is possible, many of us prefer to live out our lives in the seclusion and cover of darkness and duplicity. We’ve come too far, or lived too long with our false persona; the mere thought of dismissing or exposing our poser-selves is too frightening!

So, we play hide and seek at work, at home and especially at Church. The longer we play this nightmarish game, the more hardened and sadistic we become to our own wounded heart and soul. This process continues until we become addicted to sex, drugs, alcohol or lies. Or, perhaps our drug of choice is our reputation or religiosity. Perhaps you’ve masqueraded so long and for so many years at church, home and work, that you are even lost to yourself. This is as deadly as a heart attack and a silent killer, just as hypertension and high blood pressure can kill you. Why, we’re simply a walking time bomb of contradiction, lies and hypocrisy.

Oh, but my dear friend there is such hope, and this is why I am writing this to you. Please read on…

Isaiah has said; “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.” Isaiah 5:20.

Jesus said; “…And if the light you think you have is actually darkness, how deep that darkness is!” Matthew 6:23.

I know all about this. This was, and is my life. It is both my past and my journey. There is a Redeemer and a Healer. He is in pursuit of you, not to judge you, but to redeem you, heal you and restore you to who you were meant to be!

Your True Father wants you back. As the late Brennen Manning has so often quoted:

“God accepts you as you are, and not as you should be. Because you’re never going to be as you should be.”

The Good News, is that it’s God’s responsibility to transform you as you should be!

This is not your wife’s job, your boss’s job, your best friend’s job; it’s not your pastor or priest’s job or any self-help guru’s job to change you. It is the job of a loving God, who’s waiting for you to call out to him; “Abba”, “Papa” or “Daddy” or even “Father-God!”

The only way to the Father is through the Son. And it is the Son, Jesus Christ who’s taken upon himself all the curses and dark vows ever spoken in any language and tongue against us, so that we may be loved rather than destroyed.

Do you see this? Do you see how amazing actual living and loving can be; if all the crap, hurts, wounds and pain can be taken away?

Oh, and it can be taken away. All the guilt, shame and self-loathing; all the self-hatred and hatred of others can be removed. All the self-doubts and doubting of others; all the lost trust of self and others and the cynical and diabolic distrust and suspicion can and will be gone.

Just say this prayer out load, or even in a whisper:

Dear Jesus Christ, I stand before you, exposed, scared, ashamed and afraid. I have lived a wrong life and have hurt myself and others. I confess to you my wrong doings, my mistakes and my faults. I acknowledge my need of forgiveness from you and my need to forgive others. I also forgive myself for the harm I’ve done to me. I believe in your Word of Truth and that you lived a sinless life, died on a cross of suffering because you took upon yourself all my sin, all the curses spoken over me and all my wrong doings. You were buried in a tomb and were raised to life on the third day, making it possible for me to be forgiven and to have new life, new hope and a future. I believe these things in my heart and I confess and acknowledge them with my mouth so that I am saved and redeemed. I am now your true son or daughter and I can now call you my Abba or Papa, as you have put your Spirit into my transformed and purified heart forever and ever. Thank you for my salvation and healing, in the Name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Now, simply live a new life and understand that you now belong to God as his child and you’ve become his responsibility. He is no dead-beat-dad. He is indeed a Mighty God, an Everlasting Father, a Wonderful Counselor and a Prince of Peace. All authority is upon his shoulders and his Kingdom shall know no end.

Welcome home. Welcome to a Loving God and a Wonderful Savior!

The danger is to do nothing. To do nothing is to remain in darkness and under curses and false agreements. Do something with your new life and truly live! No longer agree with the dark voices in the back of your mind, rather reject their curses and foul thoughts in the Name and Authority of Jesus Christ.

Give the Father of Lies an Eviction Notice and cancel all your curses!

The Prodigal Father – By Thomas Koester

There was a man who had two young sons and was living a very busy life. One day, the father said to his family:

“I’m leaving for a job in Europe. This is a once in a lifetime career opportunity I’ve been working so hard for! I’ll be gone for a month, but will send for you to join me.”

Not long after the father had set off for Europe, he met a young woman and began squandering his wealth on wild living. After he had spent everything he had, the woman he had met, and the friends he’d made, all left him, high and dry. Suddenly and almost at the same time, the stock market plunged to a record low, causing him to lose his dream job. With no employer sponsoring him, and his work visa expired, he had to hide from the authorities.

Meanwhile, back in the states, the man’s family had grown concerned, as they’ve not heard from him in weeks. The man’s wife had tried his cell phone, but it was disconnected. She tried his office phone, but they said he’d been laid off a few weeks ago.

She tried to console her two young sons, who’d been crying for days for their missing father.

“Was it something that I did to make daddy leave us,” said the younger son? “No,” said the older son, angrily… “He left us because he never loved us or had time for us!” The mother tried to correct her sons, but the younger son ran to his room, slamming the door behind him, while the older son ran outside, and just kept running and running, till he fell to the ground, totally exhausted.

Weeks turned into months and months turned into years. The boys are teenagers now, tall, like their father. And, also like their father, they’ve avoided their house as much as they could, choosing to stay over their friends homes, as Mom was mostly working anyway.

In time, the man’s wife had become very ill. Since he’d left, she’d taken on two jobs and the raising of their sons alone.

During the younger son’s earlier years, he had grown attached to a churchgoing family. One Sunday, while at church, the younger son heard the preacher recite a passage from the bible. “No man can come to the father, except through me.” The preacher explained, “If you want to be with the Father you must go through the son!” At the conclusion of the preacher’s message, he gave an invitation to come to the Father. Suddenly, the younger son found himself being drawn forward, where he surrendered his life to the Son of God. The young boy, not quite understanding the preacher’s message, had thought that going through Jesus would bring him to his lost father. And towards this end, the younger son began to pray every day, without fail for the return of his father.

Now, many years later, the father, still living on the streets in Europe, in squalor and poverty and with no hope, came to his senses.

“Perhaps, I can reach out to my family, they will at least let me live in their garage, and perhaps I can tend to their yard for some food and clothing.” His thoughts continued… “Surely that would be much better than eating garbage, living in cardboard boxes under bridges.”

So, the father begged and begged, panhandled here and there, scrapping and collecting enough money to purchase an oceangoing ticket on a freighter. But alas, no one would sell him a ticket without a passport. So the father, who’d learned to be crafty while on the streets, secretly stowed himself away on a ship heading for the US.

Several weeks later, he arrived and hitched his way back home.

Exhausted and hungry, in rags and worn out shoes, he finds himself staggering down the street where he used to live so many years ago.

While he was still a long way off, a young man looks up while washing his car. His eyes fixed on the old haggard man walking towards him. His heart beating in his throat and tears filling his eyes, as he recognizes that haggard old man as his father! The younger son runs to his father, and catches him in his arms, just before he hits the pavement. He lifts his father up, all the while kissing him, and said: “dad, a preacher told me, when I was lost and alone and missing you so terribly much, that the only way to the father was through the son! And since then, I’ve not stopped praying for your safe return home.”

“Son,” the father begins… “Dad”, the son stops his father; “all is forgiven; all that remains is that mom and I still love you;’ “there’s nothing you need to say. I have the best room in our house all made up for you, just the way you’d like it. Come, live with me and I will be your son, and you will be my father, who was lost and now he’s found; was dead and now he lives!”

“What about your older brother”, asks the father? “Dad, he’s homeless and very angry. I have been praying for him too.” “Let’s get you cleaned up and we’ll introduce him to the Father, through the Son also.”

” Yes, if you forgive others for their sins, your Father in heaven will also forgive you for your sins. But if you don’t forgive others, your Father in heaven will not forgive your sins.” – The Rabbi, Jesus of Nazareth – Matthew 6:14-14 (NVC)

“Whoever does not believe in the Son does not have the Father, but whoever accepts the Son has the Father too.” – The Apostle John – 1 John 2:23 (ERV)