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.
Dear Lover of Prodigals,
Do you grow weary of praying?
Do you think the answers you ask for will never come?
Do you feel like you have no idea how to pray effectively?
I have felt all those emotions on many occasions.
We have learned from each other, read books, listened together—and prayed. I still consider prayer a holy mystery, and I need to keep knocking, seeking and asking.
But in this letter I want to give you a picture to keep you on your knees: Your prayers are a sweet aroma to the Lord into eternity. Read these words from Revelation:
“Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders…. He went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who sat on the throne. And when he had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of God’s people.” (Revelation 5:6a; 7-8)
“Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all God’s people, on the golden altar in front of the throne. 4 The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of God’s people, went up before God from the angel’s hand.” (Revelation 8:3-4)
Your prayers and my prayers are incense offered to our Savior. The Lamb receives them as a fragrant gift.
What you have prayed today for your loved prodigal will still be coming before God at that great day of revelation of the fullness of the glory of God that we only dimly perceive now.
So all that you have begged of God for your wanderer is still working into eternity. If you were to die before you see your loved one walking with God, your prayers have not died. They are still alive at the throne of grace.
So don’t despair. Keep our King awash in the perfume of your worship and surrender and trust in Him. Let the sweet aroma of your entreaties delight Him.
May you be assured that He has received your requests.
What about you? What have you been praying for a long time?
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.