I know personally how hard it is to embrace a prodigal season. When your child turns their back on the faith you exampled to them throughout their growing years, it is devastating. Their betrayal of you and to God is so painful. The idea of embracing this season seems sickening. Your heart is broken. I get it.
How could God allow this to happen? You may ask, “Why, Lord?”
When faced with any hard season, trusting God is essential. It’s especially hard when you fear for your child and all they will endure. You fear the damage that will be done to them while they are away in rebellion. In their rebellion, your child is not listening to God. They are expressing their free will.
But, how do you trust God with that? How do you get there? We may have a deep faith in the Lord, but as I discovered, t-r-u-s-t-i-n-g Him is different from faith. When our prodigal suddenly left us, we were shaken to the core. That probably happened with you if you’ve had that experience.
Spiritual gifts testing prior to that time showed that faith was my #1 gift. I knew I had a deep faith, but trust was suddenly very different. Prior to that time, I never realized how much work I had ahead in the trust department. Do you struggle with trusting God? (Please tell me I wasn’t alone here.)
I found it took a daily commitment to trust God with my circumstances. Literally, if you have trouble trusting God with your situation, each morning you should pray and commit your trust to the Lord for that day.
It feels hard to commit to trusting the Lord indefinitely as a broad statement about everything in general. Sometimes, we grab the worry and mistrust back as a knee-jerk reaction. Restating your commitment to trust God with your child’s rebellion each day takes away the tendency to take the trust back from God again and doubt Him.
He is faithful to give you the trust you need when you’ve verbally stated the commitment each day. Our hope is truly in Him alone!
We met only a couple of people who had experienced similar situations with their former prodigals. They would tell me our child would come back. They stated it confidently as if they knew for sure. Their child had returned, but how could they know mine would? I always asked them how they could know it would really happen for us?
These days, on this side of our trial, I get their viewpoint. They didn’t know our situation exactly. It’s not about how well or poorly we raised our kids. It’s not about how faithful we’d been to God. But, they know our Lord. He is faithful to keep His promises! It’s not about us. It’s about Him – our Lord. Period.
So, trust Him. Commit to trust your child to God’s care today. And, then get up tomorrow and commit to trust Him again…and the day after that…and on and on until you just do. You trust Him without question – because it’s a habit. Your hope is in Him.