This quick word on a busy Friday morning is for the parent (or spouse) of a prodigal. For years, as we walked through our own, private, desolate Kalahari time, nearly every waking moment was lived in fear. Often, there was panic. On my end, at least, and my thoughts were consumed with a horrid version of the hilarious childhood favorite, “Who, What, When, Where, and Why?”
Finally, the Lord God spoke to me one day, and He said this: “Stop trying to guess. Stop imagining where he’s at, what he’s doing. who he’s with.” And so I did. (He said reams and volumes of other things to me, too, in that desert clime, and this isn’t the time for recappin’.) But here’s what I know now in the place where I’m at.
I am not the same person I was back then. Not even close. At this point in my journey with Him, I am not dominated, ruled, or enslaved by fear. And here’s why. It’s because I know Him.
I actually, really, truly, for-myself-and-not-’cause-you-say-so KNOW Him. He has tested me and tried me. I have tested and tried Him, and while I’m comin’ out with some gold, here’s the deal. Papa IS the gold. He’s the treasure. He’s the whole kablooie. And He’s great.
Going through the Kalahari of life (and you can fill in how that looks) is just hell if you’re limpin’ along as an orphan. True words. I know.
It was when one Kalahari bled straight into another that I found, along the way, that the god of my childhood was not the real, One True God. I found a Father; found THE Father, found His love, and I am a happy and brand-new creation. ‘Cause I’m His.
So now, sufferin’ parent, grievin’ spouse, when somethin’ comes up that woulda used to’ve tanked me, it just doesn’t any more. It doesn’t have that power. And how it looks is like this. I just go to Him, and I say something like, “Give that boy good desires. You change ’em right up and then help with the doin’.” ‘Cause Philippians 2:13 gives that witness and teachin’.
So I might pray over his desires, or I’ll just say somethin’ simple like, “Now, Papa, I’m needin’ you to send mercy and truth just a-runnin’ after that one. Overpower him with those two and just enfold ‘im.” And then I’m done, I’m at rest, I have peace.
Because I trust. And I trust because I know…
“For I know Whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I’ve committed unto Him against that day.” Yes, and amen, Brother Timothy.
The bottom line is that you can be consumed with your runner and his or her issues, or you can be consumed with your Father and Who He is first. If you are more consumed with your Daddy than with your sinner, you’ll be in a much better place to love. To help. To invest. To respond. You’ll be able to think clearly, see rightly.
You’re not an orphan. You’ve been adopted. God’s your Father.
And God, my friend, has your runner.
For the One I love Who first, last and always loves me,