Prodigal Sons

They that trust in their wealth, and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches; None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him: (For the redemption of their soul is precious, and it ceaseth for ever:)” Psalms 49:6-8.

If I could redeem my children with money, I would. But I can’t. Money can ease some of the trouble, but it can’t change a person’s desires or their heart. A derelict has as much power to change another person as Queen Elizabeth does. Even with all her wealth and power, she can’t change how ratty Prince Charles is. That’s the personal nature of redemption. Which is precisely why we all need Jesus.

My current daily Bible reading is in Psalms and I came upon these verses this week and their truth rang out.

Our sons are away from the Lord. That is very painful for my husband and me. Added to that burden is the one that the enemy tries to load me down with – that it’s my fault, if I’d done something different or a lot of somethings different, then they would be different.

Now everyone should know that we can and do influence our children and that every single parent is imperfect. Sometimes, God please forgive us, we do things that have lasting effects on our sons and daughters. But there is a self-righteous rant that some parents go on when confronted with someone else’s troubled offspring: it’s the parent’s fault.

For the fearful and self-righteous, it has to be the parent’s fault. It has to be, because then they can determine that it won’t happen in their own family. They think they are or can be good enough parents to insure that their kids will remain in the fold. And I admit, I could’ve been a better parent. But I also know that my children, as all people do, have free will. Joshua 24:15 “…choose you this day whom ye will serve…” My children have not chosen to serve the Lord.

The Bible has many examples of children who went wrong, from Adam and Eve to Jesus telling us about the prodigal son.

We’ve been going through this for 18 years. We pray for them daily. We love them.

Having children who are away from the Lord is painful and lonely. Believe me, it’s far easier to carry the pain alone and keep quiet than to get flayed by someone’s critical advice or disapproval. It doesn’t matter if it’s well intentioned or not.

This is not how the body of Christ is supposed to function.

I Corinthians 1_4

This is. It’s an illustration is from The Good News Bible, I Corinthians 1:4.

The next time someone tells you about their wayward son or daughter, please don’t pour salt in their wound. Just love them as you do yourselves.


Filed under Family

5 responses to “Prodigal Sons

  1. Hi Carla,
    We do our very best, sometimes our love for them can cloud our thinking/parenting. Our children have to go on their path to God.

    Good News! 89% of Americans believe that the Ten Commandments are a good guide to live by.

    I saw a wonderful spot on TLN out of Aurora,IL they showed a program taped in London with 2 people: Joe Boot, an Apologetic and J John who is a motivational speaker. The show was Called “With No Apology” They finally have it on You Tube! I am thinking of putting the link on my blog but not sure , it is a difficult decision.

    SO Hppy you came by!!! Please keep in touch, you now have my e-mail!

    With Kindness,

    • carlahoag


      Thank you so much for visiting. I’ve visited your blog several times and have it bookmarked in my favorites. I’ll go watch the you tube now.

  2. Oh, Carla (*sigh*),
    We are dealing with this now with our daughter. She’ll be 20 in a few weeks, moved back to Florida at her first opportunity after graduation. We were very, very close. She was homeschooled. She was raised in a Christian home. We did all the “right” things. BUT the bottom line is as you say, she has her own free will, as we all do. Aside from being sad that she is going through this season, I have to admit that her choices have bruised our pride more than a little. We were the family in the church who was different because we homeschooled. All eyes were on us as they waited to see the final “product”. Yes, pride has failed us. God has not failed us, however, and I am keeping my hope that she will return to what she knows.

    It’s the most heart wrenching thing to go through as a parent. I’ll pray for you, too!

    • carlahoag


      I’m so sorry that you’re experiencing this, too. We pulled our younger son out of public school in 6th grade because we could see the signs of trouble ahead. Our homeschooling experience with him was not ideal, but it was far better than what happened with our older son in public school. But they have both abandoned the faith now and I pray daily for their return to the Lord.

  3. Pingback: Annus horribilis? « carla-at-home

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