My sons were all grown up. My house was empty and my heart felt the same. Two of my sons took paths so different than I envisioned, different than I had trained them for. Still, we enjoyed great times with our kids and belly laughed ‘till our faces hurt. But my heart hurt too.

The enemy’s lie to me during that time was this: None of what you taught your kids stuck. They are more acquainted with your generational sins than they are with your spiritual roots. And there’s nothing you can do about it.

And I was tempted to believe this lie. Because it certainly felt true.

One particular day I curled up in a ball and cried. I felt only defeat and discouragement. My husband didn’t know what to do with me. Bless his heart. He finally sat down next to me and spoke words that I’ll not soon forget. With strength and conviction he challenged me, “Why don’t you fight this battle like you fight every other battle? You’re not done fighting for our kids. And the enemy doesn’t get to keep taunting you this way. Don’t you remember who you are? Whose you are? It’s time to get up and fight.”

And he was right. I’d lost my footing because I’d lost my focus.

Something rose up within me after my husband’s pep talk and I remembered once again the authority that Jesus entrusted to me. Though there were no cameras in my house to capture the scene, I will say that my comeback-play closely resembled the epic moment in the film War Room when Elizabeth decided to put the devil in his place. If you haven’t seen that movie yet, you must. Here’s a peek at her battle stance moment when she gave that enemy a piece of her mind:

“I don’t know where you are, devil, but I know you can hear me…you have played with my mind. And had your way long enough. No more! You are done! Jesus is Lord of this house, and that means there’s no place for you anymore! So take your lies, your schemes, your accusations, and get out! In Jesus’ name! You can’t have  my marriage, you can’t have my daughter, and you sure can’t have my man! This house is under new management, and that means you are out!”[1]

Things changed for me after that day. I started to pray with precision and power. I would not be denied. The more I prayed God’s promises, the more assurance, strength, and clarity fueled my passion and my prayers.

We all have our battles. Without them we’d be weak-kneed saints who too quickly lose our footing. Trials train us to stand. Battles teach us how to fight. And God’s promises remind us of what’s true about us and about God.

You are NOT defined by your prodigal’s choices. Your value comes from Christ alone. And no enemy in the universe can stop you from praying God’s Word with authority until you take your last breath or until your prodigal comes home. Don’t give up hope.

A portion of this post was adapted from Susie Larson’s book,  .

[1] Kendrick Brothers, Chris Fabry, War Room, novelization of movie, Tyndale, 2015, p. 163

Featured Songs: Through All of It – Colton Dixon; Dry Bones – Lauren Daigle; When God Ran – Phillips Craig & Dean

Praying for Your Prodigal

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