Love and Grace: To Us and Through Us
Once a month I write a letter to the wonderful Prayer for Prodigals community I am part of. Often those letters, though specific to those who love a prodigal, apply to any or all of us in the challenging circumstances of life.
Dear Lover of Prodigals,
It’s amazing what you learn when you are trying to explain what you have learned.
I’ve been working on my book proposal for When You Love a Prodigal: Grace for the Wilderness (my working title) for the past two weeks. It’s more work than I anticipated.
I have loved the revelations of what God has been doing in our community—in you and me and in our prodigals.Clearly our first priority is to pray for our loved ones to turn and to return—to God and to us. I’m so grateful for His faithfulness to us and to them in hearing and answering our prayers.
But I’ve glimpsed how much more God is doing in us and through us. Let me try to capture the essence of four realities happening as we pray together.
We draw near to God. In desperation we turn to Him with all our fears, laying our needs before Him, pouring out our hearts for our prodigals to Him. We have accepted His invitation to join Him in the throne room in prayer. We ask, we seek, we knock, we beg, we thank—and we keep on because He has said we can.
We recognize that we are also prodigals. When we plead for our prodigals, we do so in humility, realizing we need rescuing as well. Much of our study in the Word has been to hear from God for what He is doing in us. This wilderness journey is a potent place for God to work accomplish His good plans in us.
Love and grace guide us. We’ve seen how he has dealt with us in such tenderness, loving us unconditionally and pouring his grace over us time and again. He reminds us that love and grace are the strongest ways to draw our loved ones back. So as we make hard choices and maintain clear boundaries and consequences, love and grace flow through our words, our actions, our arms.
We are doing the impossible. To endure the pain, to rise above the fear, to keep believing and hoping, to love unconditionally, to give grace and blessing instead of resentment and anger—these are impossible for us. So we receive the gracious enabling and empowering of God’s Holy Spirit to carry us through.
I am grateful to God that He has brought us together in this praying community. We pray together. We entrust our hearts and our prodigals to God and each other. We comfort and encourage each other, and we rejoice in our victories,
Thank you for being family to me through this long journey. And thanks for praying for me as I continue to work on the book.
Be blessed, my friends,
What about you? What have you learned in a difficult journey?
c2015 Judy Douglass
If you would be interested in requesting prayer for a prodigal loved one, or being a part of our wonderful praying community, respond in comments or write to me at PrayerforProdigals at gmaildotcom.
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