Between the pigsty and the party

In 1981 I was born into a loving Christian family. It took me years to emancipate myself from all the nurture and nourishment I received as a child, but after 19 of them, I finally broke free. Over to the US of A I went to be rid of my Past and to find my Self.

What I found, however, was that I didn't really like my Self at all.

It's a long story that involves much pain and circumstance, but halfway through the journey I found myself standing with the younger son in Jesus' famous parable, feeding the proverbial pigs and lamenting my pathetic place in the universe.

It was then that I determined to start on what I assumed would be a long and bumpy road back to God, bearing a large sackful of recriminations, trudging along lengthy stretches of self-flagellation and steep hill-climbs of penitence.

But, remarkably, I endured none of this. 

What I found instead was a prodigiously gracious Father who treated me just as Jesus said He would...

...while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him. And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet. And bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate. For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’
— Luke 15

I'm the Prodigal Jon.

My Father has welcomed me with scandalous grace, I love Him because He loved me first... but most of the time I find myself wandering between the pigsty and the party.