"Train children in the right way, and when old, they will not stray."
Proverbs 22:6 (NRSV)
Prodigal Thoughts: I heard this verse a whole lot as I was growing up, but I never considered how these words were full of hope for parents or those who are caring for children. Well, that is until my wife and I started having children. When children are young, there is an innocence that they are born with, but as they grow older and begin to test the waters of individuality, it may seem that they are wavering or turning down the wrong path. As parents or guardians of children, we want to hold out hope that they will make the right decisions for their own safety and personal growth. Perhaps this idea isn’t much different than the way our heavenly Father holds out hope for His children. Of course, there is the factor of free will, so He isn’t going to force us to do the right thing, but He certainly hopes that we will choose what is right. Just as we have that choice, so do our children. This is a great reason to continually pray not only for children under your care or influence, but all of God’s children. Life is never easy, but we ALWAYS have the ability to take a breath and pray for God’s direction for what would glorify Him the most.
Prayer for today: I pray that God would continue to hold out hope for all of His children and that we would truly live in a manner that is pleasing to Him. That if/when we make a choice that is not in line with God’s best, that we would be full of grace (toward ourselves and/or others) and be quick to recognize our shortcomings and turn back to the Father. I pray that we will begin to see the Father’s heart in this verse and know that He continually holds out hope for us.
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God’s grace on you…