Loving a Prodigal: Now and Forever
This is the ninth and final post in a weekly series of mini-devotionals on TIME, which is the theme of the 2013 June 2 Worldwide Day of Prayer for Prodigals. This letter goes to the members of the Prayer for Prodigals community, but it is true for all of us.
Dear Lover of Prodigals,
Let’s go back to the beginning: that is, the beginning of these devotionals, or the beginning of your waiting with your loved one, or the beginning of time.
For of course with God there is no beginning or ending:He is the Great I Am: “God said to Moses, ‘I am who I am….’” (Exodus 3:14)
He is before and after: "’I am the Alpha and the Omega,’ says the Lord God, ‘who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.’" (Revelation 1:8)
As we struggle with TIME, with waiting, with the seemingly endless pain, with giving up hope (which is for the future), it is good to remember that, though God created time, He does not live in Time.
He lives in eternity,and yet He lives in the present, in the NOW. Again, His name is “I AM.” That’s present tense.
And he calls us to live in the present, which is where we find Him.
When we dwell in the past, we relive fear, uncertainty, failure, pain. Or we hold on to better times, wishing they would return.
If we dwell in the future, we dream, we project, we hope, which are not bad things. But we can’t know the future, or control it.
God calls us to live in the present, which is all that we really have.
He is there with us: “I am with you always.” (Matthew 28:20)
And God assures us through David that our times are in His hands. (Psalms 31:15)
That’s true for those of us who love prodigals, and it is true for those we love. Their times are in His hands, and we can rest in that.
And we can keep praying. For, though we live in the present time, our prayers live in eternity.
Mark Batterson, author of The Circle Makerbooks on prayer, writes in Draw the Circle: “Our prayers never die! When we pray our prayers exit our four dimensions of space-time. Our prayers have no space or time limitations because who answers them exists outside of the four dimensions He created.
“You never know when His timeless answer will reenter the atmosphere of our lives, and that should fill us with holy anticipation. Never underestimate His ability to answer anytime, anyplace, anyhow. He has infinite answers to our finite prayers. “Mark goes on to recount stories from his own life and others’ lives of prayers answered years, even decades later. Sometimes well after the passing of the pray-er.Our God hears our prayers. He treasures them. “Your prayers … have come up as a memorial offering before God.” (Acts 10:4)
And our God answers our prayers: “In its time, I will do this swiftly.” (Isaiah 60:22)
We can hold on to this promise from our God who is before and after time, but who dwells with us in the present time: “And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.” ( 2 Corinthians 9:82)
In His Time, Judy
What about you? Are you living in the present with your prodigal? Can you see your prayers as an eternal memorial before God?
c2013 Judy Douglass
If you would like more information, to request prayer for a prodigal, or to join our full-of-grace community, please write to prayerforprodigalsatgmaildotcom with your questions or names, or for an invitation.
June 2 is our Worldwide Day of Prayer for Prodigals—just a few days from now!
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