Rock & Roll and the Good News: Episode #11 – Wish You Were Here

If you have not done so before, please review the Background on the Program

As you start to review this episode, please know that YOU matter. Regardless of what you are struggling with, regardless of the depths of your sorrows and regardless of how lonely you feel, the Good News is that YOU matter. I hope the message below nourishes you in the most meaningful way to comfort you and strengthen you to keep climbing into the ring to face your battles.

Episode #11: Wish You Were Here

Today’s episode starts with a song from Pink Floyd, Wish You Were Here.

Please spend a few minutes listening to any version you can find on the internet.


Welcome back…

I hope you enjoyed that song. Pink Floyd sang so many iconic songs in the 60s and 70s that have endured through generations.  The song Wish You Were Here carried a great deal of symbolism about being indifferent to one’s own life at a time when the band had enjoyed such amazing success but seemed like they just could not generate the energy or creativity to continue. In addition, the song was a tribute to one of the band’s founding members Syd Barrett. Syd was a part of the band during their rise to stardom but he began a pretty common struggle around fame and fortune and he gave in to some demons that resulted in a drug induced breakdown in the late 1960s. He then fell into serious mental health issues. The song speaks to the journey in all of us that sometimes we lose touch with ourselves, lack direction, and we find ourselves lost and all alone.

In the journey of adult life, it is quite typically for all of us to lose our way at various points. We may struggle with loneliness and never sure where or how we fit in. We may be consumed with a career and become detached in the home. We may have a focus on home and community and wonder what could have been if I changed direction with my passion into a career field. In addition, we may have made some poor choices around legal and financial decisions, alcohol, drugs and infidelity that drove a huge separation between us and the ones we love, and we are left wandering alone.     

In those times of wandering, we certainly feel all alone and wonder is there anyone out there who is “wishing you were here.” We find some helpful guidance to answer this most common question in the book of Luke Chapter 15 versus 11-32 (Luke 15:11-32) (please find a version of this scripture on the internet).

The background of this situation is commonly referred to as the Prodigal Son. This is one of the most often referred to parables in ancient scripture when sharing the power of redemption to believe we matter, we belong and we have been chosen. We are going to touch on one specific aspect of this story that does not get a lot of attention when the Prodigal Son is discussed.

Jesus tells the story about a father who had two sons. The younger son asks for his portion of inheritance from his father, and his father grants his son’s request. The son eventually squanders his fortune on extravagant living and eventually is broke and hurting. He decides to return home and in verse 18-20 says “I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.’ So he got up and went to his father.”

The son had reached a point of brokenness and was all alone. Many of us don’t have to look too far in the journey of our lives to see a point where we hit bottom and felt all alone.

The part of the story that is so meaningful for all of us who at times struggle with feeling all alone is found in the end of verse 20.

But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.”

The father had been waiting and waiting, looking out his window constantly hoping that his son would return home. The son who took his inheritance and squandered it on foolish living did not deter the love of the father and his thoughts for his son were of constantly “wishing you were here” by his side in his home.

The story of the Prodigal Son is so often told from the point of view of the sins of the son. However, the real message for us is on a loving God who is standing on the porch looking out for us to show us love and redemption regardless of our faults, sins, rebellious attitude, and most certainly our loneliness. The message we find most heartwarming in the ancient scriptures that guide the Jewish and Christian faiths today is the message of redemption. God’s love is standing on the porch and looking for us because we matter, we belong and we have been chosen.

Take a moment to reflect on the following questions:

  • When have I felt all alone?
  • In what area of my life do I continue to feel all alone?

As you continue along in your journey, please remember that we all find ourselves feeling all alone at various points in our journey. It can feel almost too much to endure. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed in a dark valley of loneliness, please remember that (1) God promises and is always faithful to be looking out for us to help comfort us and we should call on Him in our time of need and (2) Please reach out to a close friend to talk and please consider me one of your friends today.

As you continue to reflect on the message, please take a moment to search the internet to find and listen to Pass Me Not, O Gentle Savior. There are various artists who sing this heartwarming and reassuring hymn.


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