Never underestimate the providence and power of God in pursuing and persuading prodigals.
Don’t stop praying. Don’t stop loving. Don’t stop reaching out. God never quits.
If you are praying for a friend or family member who has walked away from the Christian faith here are a few points of encouragement:
1.) God loves prodigals.
In Jesus’ lost stories in Luke 15 he features God’s unending love. Jesus builds the emphasis and priority of his message with his final story of the prodigal son. While lost coins and lost sheep are of importance, they pale in comparison to the value of a lost son. God loves your prodigal more than you do. Keep praying. Keep trusting God. Don’t give up. Don’t lose heart.
2.) God pursues prodigals.
Your family member or friend cannot outrun God. His ear is not deaf. His eye is not blind. His arm is not too short to save. There is no where on earth that a prodigal can hide from God.
3.) God delights in saving prodigals.
God is so gracious and so loving that he finds joy in saving those who seem the least likely to ever respond. Even in the midst of a prodigal’s fury towards God, they cannot resist the Spirit of God who is able to penetrate hearts and minds. The gospel is the power of God. What is the strength of man compared to the power of the gospel?
A prodigal prayer:
Dear Heavenly Father,
You sought me when I was a prodigal. I was unworthy of your love and acceptance. Through Christ I now belong. Through Christ I am now accepted. I pray for the prodigal in my life that you would open their eyes to the truthfulness of the gospel. May the power of the gospel be made evident to them in tangible ways.
As I have trusted you with my very soul, so I entrust my prodigal to your care.
Please prepare me and others for a grace-filled and love-motivated ministry to the prodigal I care so much about.
‘Almighty God, you have made them for yourself, and their hearts will be restless till they find their rest in you; so lead them by your Spirit that in this life they might live to your glory, and in their life to come enjoy you for ever, through Jesus Christ our Lord, who is alive with you and the Holy Spirit, one God now and forever.’
(The last paragraph of the prayer is based on a quote from St. Augustine)