John 3:16-17 (NLT)
For God loved the world so much that He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent His son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through Him.
On this Good Friday I hope your thoughts will be toward the cross….a place of forgiveness and hope. What a sacrifice was given that day for you and your prodigal! Because of God’s great love for us, if we believe, we are no longer condemned.
I pray the prodigal’s heart is awakened to the gift given them at the cross.
John 3:16-17 (NLT)
For God loved the world so much that He gave His one and only Son, so that ______, who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent His son into the world not to judge ______, but to save _______ through Him.
But He knows the way I take; when He has tested me, I will come forth as gold.
Sometimes I feel like all of life is a test. Certainly, the testing is more difficult at times than others. I heard Graham Cooke say once, “We never fail a test with God, He’ll allow us to take it over and over.” God is so kind in His approach to teaching us how to walk this life in victory.
Like metal being purified by the flame, what we really think and believe will be revealed when we are put to the test and our feet to the fire! May our prodigals “come forth as gold” after times of testing…
But He knows the way _____ takes; when He has tested him/her, _____ will come forth as gold.
Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
What we think eventually comes out in words and actions. It’s so vitally important to program our minds with good, pure, lovely, excellent thoughts. It takes constant monitoring to recognize when our thoughts are shifting. The Word of God is the best input we can have to stay the course of “right” thinking.
I pray our prodigal will love the Word of God and be able to recognize when their thinking is not godly. May they desire to think on noble, pure, excellent things…
Finally, ________, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
O Lord, how many are my foes! How many rise up against me! Many are saying of me, “God will not deliver him.” But you are a shield around me, O Lord; you bestow glory on me and lift up my head. To the Lord I cry aloud, and He answers me from His holy hill. I lie down and sleep; I wake again because the Lord sustains me.
David wrote this psalm as he was surrounded by possibly as many as 10,000 soldiers. The sad thing was, he wasn’t sitting on his throne in a place of power but running for his life from his own son Absalom. Instead of sending his armies to fight for him he depended on God’s mercy. He could sleep in peace because he knew God’s purposes for him would prevail.
I pray the prodigal, no matter how great the attacks of the enemy, will cry out to the Lord and hear a thunderous reply from heaven! Also, may they be sustained by the Lord, with sleep that is peaceful and sweet, even in the midst of the battle.
O Lord, how many are ________’s foes! How many rise up against him/her! Many are saying of ________ “God will not deliver him/her.” But you are a shield around ________, O Lord; you bestow glory on him/her and lift up his/her head. To the Lord ______ cries aloud, and He answers him from His holy hill. ______ lies down to sleep; ______ wakes again, because the Lord sustains him/her.
Isaiah 25:1, 9
O Lord, you are my God; I will exalt you and praise your name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done marvelous things, things planned long ago. … In that day I will say, “Surely this is my God; I trusted in Him, and He saved me. This is the Lord, I trusted in Him; let us rejoice and be glad in His salvation.”
It’s such an encouraging thought to know God has a specific purpose for our prodigal’s lives…. a purpose planned for them before they were born! Though He has a plan that is purposeful for His Kingdom, He still allows our prodigal to have free will. Lets pray our prodigal will recognize His faithfulness in their lives, choose to walk in the purpose He has for them and trust the process.
O Lord, you are ________’s God; he/she will exalt you and praise your name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done marvelous things, things planned long ago. … In that day ________ will say, “Surely this is my God; I trusted in Him, and He saved me. This is the Lord, I trusted in Him; let us rejoice and be glad in His salvation.”
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.
There are things our prodigals may be involved in that we never know about, but our minds imagine them! During those times, it’s a comfort to rely on God’s grip on them. Sometimes that’s all we have to hold on to; placing our trust in Him allows us to sleep in peace.
Be at peace as you pray this over your prodigal today…
When _____ passes through the waters, I will be with him/her; and when _____ passes through the rivers, they will not sweep over him/her. When _____ walks through the fire, he/she will not be burned; the flames will not set him/her ablaze.
Ezekiel 36:26-27 NLT
And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart. And I will put my Spirit in you so that you will follow my decrees and be careful to obey my regulations.
This promise comes right after God tells Israel that even after all they have done, He would gather them up from all over the world and bring them home. Not because they deserved it, but for the honor of His great name He would do this.
If your prodigal is living away from you, picture their homecoming as God gathers them up and then by the power of the Holy Spirit, changes their stony, stubborn little heart to one that is tender and responsive to Him!
Place their name into this verse with that picture in mind….
Ezekiel 36:26-27 NLT
And I will give ______ a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in him/her. I will take out ______’s stony, stubborn heart and give him/her a tender, responsive heart. And I will put my Spirit in ______ so that he/she will follow my decrees and be careful to obey my regulations.
“Has not my hand made all these things, and so they came into being?” declares the Lord. “This is the one I esteem: he who is humble and contrite in spirit, and trembles at my word.”
Nothing gives me confidence about my place in life and an assurance of God’s love more than the thought that He brought all things, including me, into being! He placed me in my family and created me exactly like I am for His purposes.
My prayer for the prodigal is that they will be humbled by the same thought. May this realization cause them to be more contrite and quick to repent.
“Has not my hand made ________, and so he/she came into being?” declares the Lord. “This is the one I esteem: he/she who is humble and contrite in spirit, and trembles at my word.”
Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.
Remembering our past is a way for God to remind us of His faithfulness. Where we get into trouble is when we dwell there. Part of the Old English origin of the word dwell is…”lead astray, hinder, delay”. That’s exactly what dwelling in the past will do…it will lead us astray and hinder or delay our walking in freedom with the Lord.
For the prodigal, who may be affected by their past and tend to camp out in that place, I pray that their eyes are opened to the “new thing” God wants to do in their lives. I pray they can feel it springing up inside them even today!
Note – God doesn’t say he’s going to do away with our desert or wasteland, but He’s making a way through them – Hallelujah!
Forget the former things _________; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making for ________ a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.
1 Timothy 1:12, 14
I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that He considered me faithful, appointing me to His service. The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.
Paul’s past was one of a scoffer of Christ’s teachings and persecutor and murderer of His followers. The guilt had the potential to stop Paul from ever being useful for the Kingdom. I’m sure in the beginning he thought, “how could God ever use me?” Yet, he was used mightily and the grace of God was even more evident to him because of his past mistakes.
This is my prayer for the prodigal… whatever they have done or not done in the past will not be used of the enemy to keep them from Kingdom greatness but will drive them to be faithful to Christ because they have been forgiven.
1 Timothy 1:12, 14
I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given ________ strength, that He considered _________ faithful, appointing him/her to His service. The grace of our Lord was poured out on _________ abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.