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Come Running Like a Prodigal

October 8, 2015

So he got up and went to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.

Luke 15:20-21

 

The story doesn’t say that the son ran, but it does tell us the father ran. I love this picture.

As you come into view, Your Father’s not waiting,

no He’s running too. He’s running straight to you.

Those are words from the new song, Come Running Like a Prodigal by Sidewalk Prophets.

 

This is what the Father seemed to be saying to me last Saturday morning when I woke up with some of the words from this song running through my mind.

 

I want my children to run to me without fear. When they have sinned or walked away and are afraid or uncertain about returning, I want them to come home like the prodigal did. I want them to say, “Perhaps my Father will accept me as a hired hand…I just want to come home because it is better than what the world is offering. All that ‘fun’ I set out to have left me empty as well as broke.” When a person is at this place and they want to come home, I want them to come running even if they aren’t convinced they will be accepted…they just know it’s worth taking a chance because it would better than what they are experiencing. They have been with Me before and know what it was like.

 

God is the Father in this story, but we play a part too. Are we willing to let them get to the point of desperately wanting something to change because their life has not turned out the way they thought it would? The Father didn’t intervene while his son was away. He didn’t run after him. He didn’t bail him out. He waited and watched. I’m sure he prayed.  I’m not suggesting having no contact if they are willing, but I am suggesting we do not move ahead of God and try to be their savior. Letting them fall flat on their face might be the best thing in the end. It may be the only way God can reach them. Only God can tell you what He wants you to do in any given situation. And if they aren’t living a prodigal type life and you don’t see how this fits, don’t tune me out yet.

 

I’ve said this before but it worth repeating…God has an infinite amount of ways of getting our wayward child to a place where He wants them so He can rescue them when they come running (or crawling). It doesn’t matter how they come, just that they do. For us, it means listening very closely to God as to our part, each step of the way. We want to cooperate with Him, not make it take longer because we have decided what is best. Our prayers can be the roadblocks needed to keep the enemy from gaining any more ground and lay the groundwork for God to do what He does best. When He says “do this or say that” then we are to obey, and when He says, “hold off or not yet” we are to obey. It reminds me of a story of a man who started praying for his mother to be saved. He asked God what He should do. God said, “Pray this Scripture every day (and He gave him a particular Scripture to pray) and whenever you see her, invite her to church.” At first, things got worse. She had already told him previously she didn’t want anything to do with God and he should never talk about it. This man kept praying the verse every day and inviting her to church when he would see her which wasn’t all that often since they didn’t live that close to each other. After some time (I think like 8 months), an unlikely thing happened when he was visiting. This man and his brother got into an argument about God and the brother hit him because he spoke the truth and the brother had no response. The man left and went upstairs. Meanwhile the mother thought her son was upset because of what had happened. So she went upstairs and told him she would go to church with him.  This was the beginning and God was faithful. She didn’t immediately come to Christ, but she did come. And it was quite interesting! But my point is for you to see how this man and God were working together. That’s what God wants from us. He wants to work with us, but He is the One who calls the shots, not us!

 

Come Running Like a Prodigal by the Sidewalk Prophets

 

It’s been a long time since you felt peace
In the valley you made where you’re not meant to be
Where the shame throws shadows on you
But don’t you forget
That you’re headed to more
But you’ve settled for less
Don’t buy the lie “it’s as good as it gets”
The same feet that left you lost and alone
Are the very same feet that can bring you back home

 

Wherever you are, whatever you did
It’s a page in your book, but it isn’t the end
Your Father will meet you with arms open wide
This is where your heart belongs
Come running like a prodigal

 

There will be nights, when you hear whispers
Of the life you once knew, don’t let it linger
Cause there’s a grace that falls upon you
Don’t you forget
In the places your weak
He is very strong
Don’t ever believe “you don’t deserve love”
The same God that protects you when you’re lost and alone
Is the very same God that is calling you home

 

Wherever you are, whatever you did
It’s a page in your book, but it isn’t the end
Your Father will meet you with arms open wide
This is where your heart belongs
Come running like a prodigal

 

Oh…
Let your life be made new
Oh…
As you come into view
Your Father’s not waiting, no he’s running too
He’s running straight to you

 

Wherever you are, whatever you did
It’s a page in your book, but it isn’t the end
Your Father will meet you with arms open wide
This is where your heart belongs
Come running like a prodigal

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