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There must be more to life!

Have you ever been bored out of your mind at college?  Have you ever thought that there must be more to life than the next test?  I sat in engineering class listening to  my teacher talking about the reality of being an engineer.  “First,” he said “many engineers die young from stress.”  “Strike one” I thought to myself.  “Secondly, you will not make over 20,000 dollars per year for quite some time” he continued.  “Strike two.” “Thirdly,” he finished with a flair “there are not many women in engineering.”  “Strike three,” I thought and decided, “I’m outta here!”

My father, who worked at Boeing much of his life, wanted me to become an engineer.  I, on the other hand, wanted to become rich.  You can imagine his surprise and dismay when I quit college and instead decided to become a pig farmer!  He practically disowned me, but that did not stop me: I was going to make a fortune in swine!  I partnered up with an older man and we began to accumulate pigs.  Eventually we had three hundred and fifty sows.  That, my friend, is a whole lot of pork bellies!

Gone with the pigs

I like pigs.  Yes, they stink, but it seems your nose can become accustomed to anything if you are around it long enough.  I remember building pens and watching the small piglets playing near me.  Three of them would chase each other’s tails in a circle until they all fell down dizzy…then get up and do it all over again.  Another time, building a pen I reached back to pick up my hammer and could not find it.  I felt around the ground for a moment with no luck.  When I turned around and looked I saw a pig had it between its teeth and was heading for the hills. Imagine me running, shouting after a big pig trying to get my hammer back!

One day, my friend came to see me.  He asked me how my relationship with Christ was.  “Are you going to church?” he asked.  “No,” I replied, “I’m too busy for that.”  “Do you really think God wants you to be raising pigs?” he quizzed.  I said, “I don’t know, but if He doesn’t want me to raise them He can tell me.”  Then my friend said, “Do you mind if we pray about it?”  “No, go ahead,” I said, hoping that it would be a short prayer.  So that day we prayed that if it was not God’s will that I raise pigs, that God would make it plain.

My own personal plague

I really did not give that whole conversation much thought until the next week when my pigs started dying.  They dropped like flies.  We called vets and took samples to the university to be analyzed, but no one could tell us why our animals were wasting away. It was like I had my own personal biblical plague. It was as if God had allowed my pigs to run off the nearest cliff to die…(really, what happened to my pigs took only slightly longer.)

Finally, like the prodigal son, I began to realize that my stint as a pig farmer was not working out so well.  I left with only twenty pigs, most of them piglets, and I sold them to pay what debts I could.  After that, I went back to engineering college and began attending a lunchtime Bible Study much to the relief of my father.  Eventually, I went to Bible College so that I could understand God’s scriptures better and serve Him more.

Then I heard these words

One day, while sitting in class, my Bible College teacher quoted this verse:

“Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.

2 Corinthians 16:7

“Boy,” I thought, ” I wish I had heard that sooner.”

Prodigal Son Suite by Keith Green