Once a month I write a letter to the wonderful Prayer for Prodigals community I am part of. Often those letters, though specific to those who love a prodigal, apply to any or all of us in the challenging circumstances of life.
We have now entered into spirit and heart preparation for the June 2 Worldwide Prodigal Prayer Day. Each week we will be going to God’s Word with open spirits and hearts to hear from Him, to be ready to enter into the battle for the souls of the wanderers we love. Our theme this year is Promise: He Is True to His Name.
Dear Lover of Prodigals,
Invisible. God has given me many opportunities to interact with homeless people. Do you know what is the most consistent word they use to describe how they feel? Invisible.
Is that how you feel—sometimes, or even often? Invisible. I am so grateful that our God has names that assure us that He sees and He hears. He sees what is happening with our prodigals and with us. And He hears their cries and our prayers.
Please be encouraged with these reminders of His attention to our needs, that God sees and hears.
Sometimes we wonder where God is. Is He off taking care of wars in the Middle East, or earthquakes in Mexico or floods in South Asia? Is He attending to great political events? Or healing the multitudes with cancer? Does He even see me—or this one I love and pray for?
That’s how Hagar must have felt. A slave to barren Sarai, now pregnant with Abram’s child, she is resented and abused by Sarai. So Hagar flees to the desert. There an angel of the Lord greets her and tells her to return to Sarai, assuring her that she will have a son who will be the father of multitudes.
Hagar responds: “You are the God who sees me…. I have now seen the One who sees me.”
And that same God, though He shoulders all the cares of the world, cares for us. He is El Roi, the God who sees. He sees our hearts for our prodigals, the pain they cause us, the despair that overwhelms us, the fear that grips us.
And He sees our loved ones. He knows where they are, what they are doing, the pain they feel—and the future He has for them. Though they are out of our sight, they are never out of His sight!
We pray. And pray. And pray. Our willingness to pray assumes that someone is listening. But sometimes we wonder. Our prayers seem to “hit the ceiling.” We beg, beseech, cajole, bargain, and yet too often we feel like we have not been heard. We don’t see the answers we desire.
But our God is a God who hears us!
In Psalm 34:17 we learn of Yahweh shmo: “The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles.”
We can be assured that, as we cry out to God for our loved ones, He hears.
But there is more.
John tells us that our God is also called AkouO. He is listening and He is hearing: “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.” (1 John 5:14,15)
This is present tense. Literally, it means that God is hearing us. He is always in midst of hearing our prayers. What a promise!
Is it God’s desire that these prodigals come to Him? We know that it is. So we can come to Him with confidence that He hears our petitions, our cries. He longs for fellowship with these dear ones more than we do. And He is, in His perfect ways and times, lovingly drawing them to Himself.
We are so blessed. Our God sees us and our loved ones—He sees it all. And He listens for our voices. We can be assured that His eyes are on us and His ears are listening.
With gratitude for a seeing, hearing God,
What about you? When have you known that God sees and hears?
c2018 Judy Douglass
If you would be interested in requesting prayer for a prodigal loved one, or being a part of our wonderful praying community, respond in comments or write to me at PrayerforProdigals at gmaildotcom.
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