(Gleichnis vom verlorenen Sohn by Batoni Pompeo found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Pompeo_Batoni_003.jpg–this is not the devotional\’s cover, but an artistic rendition of the prodigal son none the less)
Coincidence. Some say it is how God works when He wants to stay anonymous.
I have a dear loved one who needs to repent of a pretty sinful lifestyle. Do you have one of those? Or maybe you are one of those for someone else. Anyway, this person’s life is causing troubles in a variety of ways. Health issues, relationship issues, addictions…what bothers me to no end is what a beautiful person they are, and what a waste it all seems…years lost never to be seen again.
They, long ago, gave their life to God and have back slid…they’ve ceased moving forward in faith and have settled for that which destroys, that which gives a temporary buzz but eats away at their soul and creates distance from their Savior. We’ve all stepped in that direction and some of us have never turned around, some of us refuse to face the Light, some of us actually seek sin.
Oh, back to coincidence. I felt God nudging me to pick up a devotional for this loved one. One of those freebies you find in church racks. I grabbed it during the latest trip to church and there on the cover (coincidentally) is a picture of the prodigal son being hugged by the father. If you aren’t familiar with the story, it goes something like this: a son asks for his inheritance which the father gives. The son takes it and squanders it all on loose living and ends up poorer than poor and utterly destitute. He surmises that he can’t go home as a son, but that maybe his father would take him in as a servant, for at least then he’d have meals and shelter. What happens next Scripture says best: “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. ” Then the father throws a huge party for the son and celebrates his homecoming, his repentance, his desire to be with the father again. (story found in Luke 15).
So, if my dear one never opens the devotional, at least they will see the cover and probably that is what they need to see, that is why I was supposed to grab it and give it. Maybe, by coincidence, they will sense God’s loving embrace calling them. They will somehow know that it is ok to come Home. That Life can begin again.
As I reflect, I realize I need another copy of that devotional. No, I need multiple copies as that image can help bring healing to so many hurting souls (I know I need it). There is no fear in God’s embrace, only loving joy, only warm welcome, only splashes of laughter.
So is this whole episode really coincidence? Naw…definitely God doin’ His thing. And now I’m blogging about it, so He really ain’t able to be anonymous, is He? Just the way He likes it, do think so.