Modern-Day Prodigal Son: The Constant Struggles of the Contemporary Christian Brought to Life

By AnnaMarie Cantrell Modern-Day Prodigal

GREENVILLE, S.C. – Dr. Matthew Chavis was reveling in success and enjoying the good life until evil sent his affluent world crashing down.  Archetypical sins draped as contemporary norms lured him down a harrowing descent into empty darkness, nearly destroying him physically with alcohol abuse, disintegrating his marriage, and devastating his million-dollar practice. Only through God’s love, mercy, and grace was Chavis able to vanquish his demons and find peace with the Lord and himself.  The saved Christian now chronicles his transformation in the novel, “Old Highway 316.”

“Old Highway 316” follows the story of Thomas, a small-town boy with big dreams, as he discovers a variety of obstacles and triumphs in life. Beginning in the quiet town of Lumberton, North Carolina, Thomas finds a life-long friend, achieves massive professional success, and marries his soulmate. Life seems beyond perfect after settling down in nearby Monroe. As with most situations, temptation arises, and Thomas finds himself faced with a decision.

He struggles in silence, refusing to seek help from his wife Leslie or best friend Brian. Soon the apprehension of his new-found fast life begins to fade into a haze of bad decisions, as his career continues to accelerate. Seduced by evil, he slowly slips out of grace and into a downward spiral. His decisions quickly begin to affect Leslie and their family. Rock bottom seems to be the only place that will force Thomas to his knees and to look upward beyond the false pleasantries of life and into the eyes of God.

“The epiphany that God’s grace afforded me was so great, I felt the need to share my experience with others,” said Chavis. “And what better way than a compelling story with many twists and turns.”

Chavis has been a featured guest on several Christian radio stations and his works cited by many on the web and in the print media. “It is a constant reminder of God’s unending mercy and grace,” said Chavis.

Old Highway 316 is available at local bookstores and on

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