Prodigal Father - Mercy
|Peter Watts Jr, and Peter Watts Sr.|
Since I last wrote about my reunion with my dad a lot has happened. God's hand of reconciliation and redemption has been at work. I have seen the hand of God moving on my behalf and his. I have been challenged to love and show grace and mercy to a man who has not been a part of my life for over 30 years. We are like strangers to one another in some regards. But there is something so beautiful taking place in the midst of pain...
I have visited my father while he was in the hospital each day. I got to ask him questions and hear him talk about my childhood and things that I didn't think he would remember. Now the real work has begun. I have received so many encouraging words and emails and phone calls which has strengthened me. I have also been in this place of the unknown. When people would ask what are you going to do? I have responded with I don't know. This is a true faith walk with God.
The hospital released him to a recuperative care center which happens to be 10 minutes away from where I live. They feed him 3 hot meals a day and provide for all of his necessities. He has a 14 day stay at this place. When the hospital gave me this information, I knew something had to be done after the 14 days were up. Well, a good friend of mine name Jennifer who does ministry downtown on Skid Row, heard about my Father and texted me and said, "I know you have a hectic life and I want to help you take care of your dad." What! I was floored by her generosity to help me navigate these unknown waters. Since then, Jennifer has helped me get him a bed at the Union Rescue Mission which is a Christian recovery place for the homeless. The recuperative care center has given him a case worker who will help with permanent housing and the hospital helped him apply for a state I.D.
I can't tell you how incredible and thankful I have been to see God use so many people in my life right now. I have gone to visit my dad almost everyday since he's been in this recuperative care center. The first time I visited him he had about 8 different medications that the hospital equipped him with for his current medical conditions. He was trying to take his medication at one point and spilled the pills all over the room. I found myself on my hands and knees picking up pills from off the floor trying to help him put them back in the bottle. In my mind I thought God please keep my heart softened toward him. I graciously picked up the pills put them back in the bottle and gave him what he needed.
Here is a person that never raised me fully, but now I am becoming the parent in a sense to him. This has no doubt given me a new perspective and heart for the poor and marginalized of our society. I now have an actual face and connection to those who are out in the streets whose families are not connected to them. On the 22nd of May he will be transferred to URM where he will be working with a case worker to get him section 8 and permanent housing. He is also going to receive services for mental health, medical, and dental.
I couldn't have imagined that being a pastor in Los Angeles and working as the director at World Impact would have remotely led to this. When my grandfather would say that God works in mysterious ways I now understand what that means!
My story is to be continued...