“Never cease loving a person, and never give up hope for him, for even the prodigal son who had fallen most low, could still be saved; the bitterest enemy and also he who was your friend could again be your friend; love that has grown cold can kindle.” ~ Soren Kierkegard
I opened the narcotic cabinet and took a pain pill and a small cup of water, as he sat there in the waiting area, crying, holding his left arm on a splint and sling with his right hand. He just returned from ER and was treated for his left wrist fracture he sustained when he fell as he was being chased by the arresting officers the day before.
I decided to add 3 tablets of Motrin with a higher dose and secured them in a tan envelope so he could have extra pain medications before seeing the jail doctor. He still needed to wait and the night was only young.
Calling him from a brief nap he was in as weariness set in, he started crying again as I talked to him and gave the medications.
"What hurts? Your arm or something else?" I queried.
"Yes, it does. But not as bad. I'm crying because I can't help but think about my wife who is in the hospital now...pause...more tears....She broke her back when she accidentally got run over by the cops. "F..." I told her not to run!..."S..." I told her to stay where she was!" he related as he continued to sob. [I let him continued to vent out despite the vulgar languages that came out of his mouth]...
I saw his arms covered with tattoos. Of images of dragons, and devils and women in provocative pictures. He was somewhat in his early 30's as I estimated. On and off, he was sobbing.
"Dude...You!....Been in and out here?" I asked as I tried to find commonality among the differences in our own jargons.
"Yes, Ma'am. Many times."
"Picture yourself, who hasn't been in the jail yet...Here comes the cops after you. What will be your initial reaction?"
"Run away...'Coz I'd be scared..."F____!"
"Exactly what she did! So, don't be upset for the way she reacted... You use drugs or other substances?"
"Weed....Been on it for many, many years...pause...more sobs....My wife and I have been using it since we were younger...Like a joint or 2...I violated my parole...I got caught and I tried to take off..."F...!" I shouldn't have done that! Now, my wife is hurt. She might need surgery. I heard she broke her back in 2 places! Gosh!!!! I love her so much. Because no one else loves me but her!"
"Feel like hurting yourself?"
"No...I just want to talk...Thank you for listening."
"No...Thank you for venting out. Because I want to help you with whatever way I can. I just hope doing so, you are feeling better."
"I'll have someone from mental health services see you anyway because you are very anxious right now and so worried. [The mother side of me wanted to say a lot of things but something prevented me from doing so]. "You can't do anything at this time being locked up anyway. It's easy for me to say this...but let your own injury heal and take care of your own problems first because you need to overcome this before you can take care of your wife. Okay? Your wife is in the hospital. She's in the best place where she can be taken cared of and with good technology nowadays, try not to worry."
"Thank you for listening and giving me these pain meds," he uttered as he finally wiped the drops of tears that kept rolling down his haggard face.
The "mother side" of me that didn't unleash was a good thing to happen, a divine provision, His gift of discernment. If unleashed would have turned him away and would prevent him from venting out what was cutting deep into his heart.
"Pray...now! For Him!"
"How? People are in here!"
"Pray, My child!"
"He's one of the prodigals that I'm still seeking...You know...You were a prodigal before, daughter...But I found you...And I want you to pray for him so he will turn to Me. You know it's not true that it was only his wife who loves him. He forgot! I love him very much. The way I love you all!"
"I saw it, Lord....I saw his red eyes welling with tears, wanting a way out but he was in such a deep mess. He wanted to get out. But he didn't think there was a way....But nothing is impossible with You...."
I closed his medical chart and put my pen down. And unsuspecting to the rest of my coworkers, I bowed my head down and uttered a prayer for this prodigal. I knew...He would return...to God...
Because in this life's journey, no matter how far we had strayed away from Him, no matter how many wrong roads we have taken, it's not our hold on Him that saves us....It's His!
"You will be accepted if you respond in the right way. But if you refuse to respond correctly, then watch out! Sin is waiting to attack and destroy you, and you must subdue it." - Genesis 4:7