|I have never looked up the word "Prodigal" in the dictionary until today, I didn't have to - I knew what it meant. Everybody knows what it means, everybody who has read or heard the story of the prodigal son, knows what it means. What does it mean to you? To me it always meant simply the one who went away and came back, or went astray ... along these lines.|
That was the impression that I got the first time that I heard the story, and it never changed, till today. Which means for 50 odd years I have had the wrong impression on something. In itself not important, it is after all only a word. Yet how often don't I make a snap judgement on something, only to find out later how wrong I was, and then go and eat humble pie a la mode.
There have been times when I didn't need to eat the pie, as my impressions have been private and personal. However, the revelation of the impression no less humbling personally.
Jay was a quiet unassuming guy - didn't say much, probably because of his pronounced stuttering. I met him in a church I was attending during my wonderlust years. They had a very early weekly prayer meeting I supported, a low key sedate in gradual progression from sleep into our routines.
One week, as we were winding down, almost everybody had prayed, I felt someone coming to stand next to me, my eyes were closed. As soon as the person who was praying at that time finished, a strong baritone voice next to me started singing songs of praise, then into worship, before praying with passion in full flood, carrying the whole room with him, ending the meeting with everybody fully charged.
Now, many years later, reflecting how far I have drifted, I'm still blessed in remembering Jay's real side.
Psalm 95:2: "Let us come into His presence with thanksgiving; Let us make a joyful noise to Him with songs of praise."