Praying Home The Prodigal

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It is almost impossible for my mind to communicate to my heart that it has been three years since I lost my beloved son.  It seems in the measurement of pain that it has been 30, and when I think of the specific heart wrenching, take your breath away kicked in the gut feeling, it seems like it was only yesterday. It seems as if only yesterday my life was changed in a heartbeat, my life became my old life with that one thump-thump and I started a new life with the next thump-thump.  Locked away as if behind steel bars was the life I had, the life I had planned and the idea of the path my life was supposed to take.

“Man makes his plans but God directs his path”

Two weeks before Chile died I was in my room praying and my soul was very troubled for my children, each one of them were doing something in their lives that I thought didn’t line up with how they were raised.  Being an amateur parent I truly thought that if you did everything to the best of your ability to raise your kids, they would turn out good, follow God and make Godly decisions.  But young adult children do what they want, kind of like Gods grown up children,” and all we like sheep have gone astray. ” So there I sat on my knees forehead on my bed weeping hot humble tears.  ” God I am and have been so wrong I want my children to do right, to look right because of my own foolish pride. I can’t imagine walking  with them through the sin that they are entangled in.” As sure as the word were rolling off my lips in heartfelt sobs a supernatural shifting began to take place, suddenly I realized how ugly my thinking had been, how years of my parenting had been in vain, how I just wanted to raise Christian Kids so that I could look successful and prove that I was.  I knew that if I tried hard enough I wouldn’t be one of those sad Christian Parents who said “I don’t know where I went wrong!”  The kind of Christian Parent who was the object of my judgement.  I was there in a heap head now on the floor, the two-edged sword had been thrust into my spirit and I was found wanting.

Suddenly the true prayer started to emerge from my soul as if it had been there buried, hiding for a long time.  The prayer was one of the most authentic prayers that had ever happened to me, it was happening, I was a part of the prayer but I wasnt the author of it. My forehead was resting on holy ground and the utterance of my mouth was this…”Lord forgive me from the depths of my soul for being so prideful, Lord I have only wanted to please you but in that desire to have gotten lost and started to please others and myself.  Heavenly Father I am so afraid that eternity planted in my children hearts will somehow be stolen from them. Lord I am afraid of being destroyed by my enemy, Lord I do not trust you I am afraid you are a harsh master and I am lost.”  I was unaware of the pig pit I had walked myself into and now with the light of Gods Holiness I could see my muddy mess.  The Spirit had spoken to my heart or through my heart and I had seen with the eyes of my hearts understanding that I was a sinner saved by grace safe in the arms of my Father, He was in charge, I was not.  He would be the Author and Perfecter of my faith and my children, and all my striving couldn’t help.  He would keep me. He would do the work.   He would shed blood.  He would pay the penalty.  He would Judge.  Suddenly I understood that I was the prodigal and I needed to find the path home.   I didn’t know from that crazy prayer  what the journey on the path would entail I never thought I would bury a son. I never though I could feel such deep compassion.  I knew I  had no control over the path.  I couldn’t say for sure even if I were to behave on the path that it would be safe, I didn’t know if I could behave.  I didn’t know if I might start heading in the wrong direction back to the pig pit, but what I did know was that the path led home. The path was the way of surrender. On the path I was held by the Spirit, off the path I was still held by the Spirit.  And at the end of that path was my Father.

13 thoughts on “Praying Home The Prodigal

  1. Thank you for reading sweet friend. It is a compliment to be called transparent, all Glory belongs to God though. Love ya!

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  2. Wow, Amy Jo! Just, WOW! How honestly and beautifully and transparently conveyed. Thank you!!
    About five years ago I saw, in an instant, that I had wandered into a “pig pit” as you put it. My awful pride and judgmental spirit. I never want to forget that evening of knowing the depth of my sin and beauty of my savior. Though I’ve been a Christian for over 38 years, I am prone to wander. Thank you Jesus for the gift of repentance and for your great salvation!

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    1. Thank you so much for reading and for being such a strong champion in my own faith. I will forever be grateful for your prayers and tenderness shown to me when my precious son died.

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  3. Then, now, & tomorrow. It’s a journey. The then and now are our story for tomorrow. Mistakes & triumphs of our then & now help guide our tomorrow. The LORD has blessed our family. I’m here for your on this most difficult day.

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  4. your such an amazing women much love and respect, I love reading what you write even as I cry wiping my tears you are a blessing to many love aunt mel-d

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    1. Thank you for always reading and being such a huge supporter of me. I know you love this little Bartels Family Aunt Mel and we love you too!

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  5. And again, similarities… your two weeks prior and mine…only I had a nightmare that the devil came to our front door so real that I felt compelled to wake everyone up and tell them they needed to confess Jesus Christ as their Savior! Well he came to our door alright; but thanks be to God Jesus Christ was our Savior! I too have learned God is the Author and perfector of our faith and our children’s, and not to “strive” Must allow Him to be just as original with them – as He was with us
    So love you my sister in suffering xox

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    1. Dear Joy,
      Thank you for sharing this story with me. I remember you sharing this with me also when you came to visit me in my home. God is indeed all we have and our only hope and if we are His then our prayers begin and end in Him. What an encouragement that is to us both.

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