Or do we?
We all are familiar with the parable of the prodigal son in Luke 18. What usually comes to mind is the child of some poor parent who was raised in a Christian home and goes off the rails selling drugs and sleeping around. But it might not be as bad as that. A dictionary definition of “prodigal” is spending money or using resources freely and recklessly; wastefully extravagant. Other synonyms include imprudent, immoderate, excessive, irresponsible, self-indulgent and reckless.
Based on that definition I would have to say my two sons border on being prodigals. Because I see times when they fit all of the above. Maybe I should take a look at that book.
So I did. The book is made up of “moments” – simple entries about a page in length that contain Scriptures, prayers, thoughts and reflections to assist parents to think biblically (and not emotively) about their wayward children. I soon found them tremendously helpful in helping me to think and pray more wisely and effectively. Here are a few samples:
Moment 5 – A Prayer from Proverbs
Lord, please grant ________________
The good sense to choose friends carefully.
The wisdom to act prudently.
A wholesome tongue.
Slowness of anger.
Diligence and industriousness.
Direction in his steps.
Wariness of alcohol.
Purity of heart.
A tender conscience.
Wise counsel from others.
An excellent life partner.
Moment 24 – Singleness of Heart and Action
Sovereign Lord, You have made the heaven and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for You. Now, please give ____________ singleness of heart and action, that he will fear You for his own good and the good of his children after him. In Jesus name. Amen.
And then there is this one from Brother Lawrence which I really like. Now I know there is a lot of discussion about as to whether Brother Lawrence really knew Jesus or not. I have read his book The Practice the Presence of God and found it very helpful. Only the Lord knows. However, what I do know is when a prayer is made from a truly saved and sanctified heart – God will hear it. The author adopted the following prayer from his writings:
Lord, You have given _____________ a good disposition and a good will, but there is in him still a little of the world and a great deal of youth. One does not become holy all at once. Please forgive my child’s sins. He shall never do otherwise if You leave him to himself; it is You who must hinder his falling and mend what is amiss. Lord, You have many ways of drawing us to Yourself. Let my son begin to be earnestly devoted to You. Let him cast everything that hinders out of his heart, and may we soon see that change wrought in him that we desire. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
That’s just for starters. There’s a ton more in the book. If I find some other gems I’ll post them.