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Saturday Psalm and Praise~Draw Nigh Unto God




My back aches.    I’m so tired of this job.   Hauling these buckets of slop certainly isn’t "fun work"!





How did I get to this place, anyway?   Why did I think this was better?   Why did I leave my father’s presence?





The pigs rush to the trough as I pour in their meal of "garbage soup".    Shoving each other out of the way, trying to get it all for themselves……just like my life.





Seems when I thought everything was good, I was pushing and shoving others out of my way to get what I wanted.





Then it all changed.




It ALL changed.





Now *I* was the one being shoved out of the way.   No one had time for me.   No one wanted to help.   I was used up and cast aside like a broken toy.




I’m so hungry!  I haven’t had money for food for nearly a week.   I’ve squeaked by, but now……I’m so tired of the cold and the loneliness and the gnawing hunger…….




I start looking at the slop.   There’s some bread and gravy that doesn’t look too bad.    Maybe I can snatch it out before one of the pigs gets it……




WHAT AM I DOING?!  I stop myself short.




Slop!  Pig slop!   At home my father’s hired hands eat better than this!  Even in a famine, Father wouldn’t let them eat pig slop!



I’ve had enough!   I throw the slop bucket down and start for home.   No need to go back to my "room" and get what I have left.   It isn’t worth keeping.  



I have a long trek home.   Lots of time to think.   Thinking about how these pigs shoving each other around to get some morsel of slop……and it’s really garbage.    That’s what I’ve been doing.   I left the best, thinking it was restricting me, thinking my father really didn’t care, that he favored my older brother……so I come out here and squander my inheritance like I’m really somebody, only to find out like so many before, how easy it is to be used.   Especially when you think you’re so great!   Seems fools like me are the biggest fish for the savvy world to catch. 




And throw out the bones when they’re done.




Friends!  HA!   Hardly……




And me, shoving others out of my life.   Like my father…..my brother…….




What am I going to tell him?   "I’m sorry" seems a bit trite, considering how I’ve treated him!    All I can do is humble myself before him, beg him to take me as a hired hand since I am no longer fit to be called his son.   And pray my older brother will have mercy on me.  After all, when Father is gone, my brother will be the one I will depend upon for my daily sustenance.



I’ve worked slopping those hogs…..I’d rather do anything for my father….no matter how hard or menial or grubby the work, I’d do it for him.    I know I can’t earn anything from him, but just to show how wrong I was and how much I appreciate food and a place to stay….I’ll do anything he asks, and I sure don’t expect him to even talk to me.




Heart heavy.   Feet feel heavier.   I’m looking down, but even so, I can tell I’m getting closer.




There’s widow Susana’s home.   And there’s Simon bar Judah’s barley field.   Just a little farther…..




Past the stream where Jehoshua and I used to play.     Around the next bend…..wonder if he’ll be at the house or with the workers in the field?  



I finally bring myself to look up.




Total shock!  Could it be?!



Could it really be?!






I run in spite of myself!    It seems like he is running towards me, too!!!



But I remember where I’ve been, what I’ve done.   As I get to him, I fall to my knees.



"Father!  Father!  I am no more fit to be called your son!!!   Please take me as one of your hired men!  I’ll do any job, no matter how hard, no matter how menial, no—"


"SON!"  Father falls to his knees beside me and hugs me.



"No, NO, Father!  I’m sweaty and I smell of swine and slop and–"



He’s weeping!   Hugging my neck and weeping!



"My son!  My son!  My son who was lost is now FOUND!"



The hired workers all run to see what the commotion is about.  



"Quick!   Bring the robe and the ring!  Kill the fattened calf and make haste!  We are celebrating today!  My son was lost, but now he is HOME!" 



He takes the robe and puts it around my slop stained shoulders.  Shouldn’t I bathe first?  Purify myself?



He puts the ring on my finger again……I’m not worthy!  I sob!



"Son, from the day you left I never stopped believing you would come home again.  I have been preparing for this day all along!  I knew you would come back!   Come back to our time together!  You will always be my son!"



I weep upon his shoulder, trembling in his tender embrace.   I can’t bring back the inheritance I’ve squandered.   I can’t bring back the years I’ve wasted.



But I can start over this moment–this day!



He still loves me!  I’m still his son!



He was there, waiting, all along.




I didn’t need to get cleaned up first or prove myself.   I only needed to turn….



And go Home!!!!!



But now, because of my father’s love for me, I WILL get cleaned up and stay that way.  



What love!



I want to bask in that love for the rest of my days.   I never want to do anything that would bring him shame or break his heart again!



"Thank you, Father!  Oh, thank you!   It’s so good to be Home!"



He puts his arm around me as we head into the house for a joyful celebration…..



….a celebration of a love that has called me Home and caused me to long for my father’s relationship again.



I’m Home.   I’m HOME!






James 4:8     "Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you.  Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded."




How often do we get this backwards!   We think we have to "get cleaned up to take a bath"!!!




What is the first command?  "Draw nigh".   As we initiate that move towards (or back towards) our Abba Father, He draws near to us.   Actually, He was there all the time!   WE are the ones who moved away, and as we move back towards Him, we see that He is there waiting…..even running to meet us as did the Prodigal Son’s father!




THEN we cleanse our hands….our works, deeds, words…….and purify our hearts…….our motives, attitudes….




But really, even that is done by Him.   As we draw near, and see He is there with us, because we love Him so much, we WANT to purge away the dross.   Prune away the dead and diseased branches.   Cleanse our hands and hearts of all that is not pleasing to the Very One Who gave us life and sustains our life.




So again, it’s not about US.  It’s about HIM.   He loved us before the foundation of the world, had a plan, gave His only Son to fulfill that plan, redeemed us to Himself, paid the bride-price.




How can we want anything less than to please our Heavenly Father?   And our Heavenly Bridegroom and Lover of our souls?!




All that I do, I do because I love Him—not to earn His love or favor!




Even when I stray…..a little….. a lot…….even when I foolishly "charge God" because my heart is hurting….or lonely……or selfish…….



He doesn’t let me stay in the muck and mire.



He is patiently waiting to see just a hint……just the tiniest hint…….of turning…….




Then He’s there!    Ready to receive me, to hug me, to pick up our relationship.

That’s what it’s ALL about. 

Relationship with Him.

That’s why He died—to restore that Eden relationship He created mankind for.

Oh, won’t you come Home?!

Sometimes we actually stray, sometimes we stray in our minds.  Sometimes we check out and get out, sometimes we check out and "leave" even though we’re still physically here.



Either way, the Father waits. 



He longs.



He prepares.




He’s there!   Outstretched arms and a hug that says, "I knew you’d come back!  I’ve missed you! 




You don’t have to get cleaned up.




Just go Home.   Draw near and He is already near.  He’ll help you clean up and purify—but right now–



Let’s go to the celebration.






The Celebration of a Father’s Love.

3 Responses to “Saturday Psalm and Praise~Draw Nigh Unto God”

  1. Anonymous says:


    This was excellent! I've 'marked' it for our children & also have it in the 'to print' queue. I'm considering sending to our Pastor. (Can you tell I appreciate it?). :)

    grateful for Him who is Rock, Fortress, and Might,


    PS: I wore a covering to church today for the first time. And, I received several lovely comments about it. It is exciting actually, to be on this journey of obedience… :

  2. sagerats says:

    Excellent post!

  3. Piglet2u says:

    This is so beautiful. Did you write it Trisch? I copied and saved a copy for future sharing, when the time is right.

    God bless you!

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