Vale of Tears

Praying for Prodigals



Praying for Prodigals

At the age of forty, Esau married two Hittite wives . . .
But Esau’s wives made life miserable for Isaac and Rebekah.

Genesis 26:34-35

Many of us have experienced acute grief when loved ones turn their back on following the Lord. Leaders feel this pain particularly, fearing perhaps that the waywardness of their children (or partner) will “nullify” their own testimony. No wonder that God is calling so many to pray for “prodigals” (of whatever age) to experience Holy Spirit conviction and to come back home to the Lord.

Let no one pretend that this is anything less than immensely challenging! Billy Graham once commented that steering his son Franklin through his teen years was the hardest challenge he ever faced. The compassionate ministry his son has long been leading is testimony to the outstanding job he did.

Not all of us are so successful. When several of his sons showed alarming sexual tendencies, King David showed himself uncharacteristically indecisive in dealing with them. Quite possibly he held back from taking the firm steps that were needed because his conscience was busy accusing him of being a hypocrite.

The Lord had no intention of giving up on David because of His “mistakes,” any more than He does when we fall from grace in some way. At the same time, we cannot fail to notice that David had opened the door for far-reaching troubles to afflict his dynasty.18

Despite these, David was able to declare at the end of his days:

In my distress I cried out to the Lord;
yes, I cried to my God for help.
He heard me from His sanctuary;
my cry reached His ears.
2 Samuel 22:7

Reflect and Pray

Despite all our mistakes, Lord,
Bring our children back to You,
and give them the resilience they will need
to navigate through the losses
that are sure to come their way.

May they come to love You with all their hearts –
and may their future homes
be filled with that same love.