Searching for My Friend

by Jeffrey W. Hamilton

Looking into the sunsetOnce again I lost a dear young friend to the seductive snare of drugs. It grieves me to the depth of my heart to see a life full of potential and capable of great joy being twisted toward ruin, sadness, and loneliness.

I can't stand remaining silent. To this last young man, I had committed to be there for him and to fight to help him reach our Father at the end of our lives. The choices he makes are his own, but I can make choices too.

What you will find on these pages are my attempts to stay connected with him, to find the lost, bright spirit I remember so well. I'm sharing them with you both to help me organize my thoughts, perhaps help others help reach the lost, and if possible to find more than just my friend.

My only contact at the moment is through voice mail and regular mail. He won't answer the phone when he knows I'm calling. So each message will be a single point. I can't be sure he'll listen to the message or read the note, but hope and confidence in God are all I have left. Please pray for the effort and if you have suggestions or similar needs, please let me know.

Update 8/6/2010: In case you are wondering why these notes have slowed down, several things have changed. My friend has stopped using marijuana since about mid-June. He's repented of his sins near the beginning of July and has been talking to members of his congregation one-on-one. The last word I had was that there was strong hope that he would be returning to the church soon. Early in July he moved to a better location, but I don't have the address. He also dropped his phone service, so I can't call. How much these notes helped, I do not know; he still won't talk to me face-to-face, though he once told me in a brief call that he was reading the letters. I do know that a LOT of people are working in concert to bring him back and that joint effort seems to have worked.

As a side-effect of these articles, I've been contacted by several people who are trying to end an addiction. It is a pleasure to put the hard lessons I've learned into use to help others. I hope to continue to add articles to this list that I deem particularly useful in talking to someone addicted. I hope they may help in your own struggles to reach your friends.

Update 9/20/2010: Through the concerted efforts of my friend's family, members of his congregation, and several friends around the country, he has left drugs behind and has returned to serving the Lord with his brethren. He still has a ways to go, as he will readily admit, but he is back on the right path. We are back in contact and I have seen him several times. I thank everyone of you for your prayers on his behalf. Most importantly I thank the Lord for showing him such compassion.

Topic Composed Delivered
Freedom! 2010-05-08 2010-05-10
A Game? 2010-05-09 2010-05-14
My Sin Is Always Before Me 2010-05-11 2010-05-13
The Consequences of Choices 2010-05-12 2010-05-17
Are You Happy? 2010-05-13 2010-05-18
Sorrow Without Regret 2010-05-13 2010-05-19
Mr. Lonely 2010-05-14 2010-05-20
It's Only 2010-05-17 2010-05-24
Perfect 2010-05-24 2010-05-25
All By Myself 2010-05-24 2010-05-26
Have I Become Your Enemy? 2010-05-25 2010-05-27
Hard Truths 2010-05-26 2010-05-28
Mission Impossible? 2010-05-27 2010-05-31
Thinking of Yourself 2010-05-27 2010-06-02
Independence 2010-05-28 2010-06-03
Judge, Jury, Executioner 2010-05-29 2010-06-04
Round in a Circle 2010-05-30 2010-06-06
Seeking Another 2010-06-01 2010-06-01
The Pits 2010-06-03 2010-06-07
Buying Insurance 2010-06-03 2010-06-09
Never Too Far 2010-06-06 2010-06-10
Rock Faces 2010-06-06 2010-06-11
Before the Difficult Days 2010-06-07 2010-06-13
Compromised 2010-06-08 2010-06-08
With "Friends" Like These ... 2010-06-10 2010-06-14
Body Image 2010-06-10 2010-06-15
Arrogant Fools 2010-06-12 2010-06-16
Remember When? 2010-06-12 2010-06-20
Mirror, Mirror on the Wall 2010-06-13 2010-06-21
Addicted 2010-06-15 2010-06-22
Avoiding Stress 2010-06-15 2010-06-23
Sober Minded 2010-06-21 2010-06-24
Anger 2010-06-24 2010-06-25
The Blame Game 2010-06-24 2010-06-27
Growing Pains 2010-06-28 2010-06-28
Checkpoint 2010-06-28 2010-06-29
The Worse Lies 2010-07-02 2010-07-02
The Way of Escape 2010-07-04 2010-07-07
Getting in Gear 2010-07-04 2010-07-08
Self-Made Hardships 2010-07-08 2010-07-09
Determined to Win 2010-07-10 2010-07-11
Desiring Life 2010-07-14 2010-07-14
Progression 2010-07-16 2010-07-16
What Life Isn't About 2010-07-17 2010-07-19
What Makes Life Better 2010-07-17 2010-07-21
Choice 2010-07-26 2010-07-26
A Common Problem