Skip to main content

The Journey of the Prodigal Parent


This article is written primarily for prodigal parents who are in the journey of having a prodigal child. The definition of journey is the act of traveling from one place to the next. Sometimes when you are traveling there are places that you have never been before, roads that are rough, and there are times your destination takes a little bit longer than you hoped.

 As a prodigal parent, I would like to share with you some things that may bring you comfort.

No one ever hopes their child will be rebellious and turn from the things of the Lord. Most Christian parents have this dream that their children will follow the Lord and serve Him. It is devastating and heart-wrenching to watch your child make poor choices that will hurt him or her. Many prodigal parents feel all alone and ashamed of their child’s behavior. It is also common for prodigal parents to experience guilt, depression, sadness, and grief. There are times that you may feel like you are on a roller coaster ride, as your child hurts or has another consequence come upon them for their behavior; you can feel the sadness of all this.

There will be moments when you feel hopeless and full of despair. Friends and family who have not gone through this journey may not always understand what you are going through. They mean well, but sometimes their comments can hurt you more. It can be a very lonely journey. Most parents bask in their child’s achievements, but a prodigal parent oftentimes remains silent when other parents are glowing about their children.

Holidays, and particularly Mother’s day and Father’s day can be quite difficult. It can be a reminder as to what you are missing in your life, and the rawness that you have in your heart. You do try and smile and pretend you are okay, hoping that no one can see through your pain. You wonder if anyone really knows the suffering you feel.

Then there are those days where you are at peace with your prodigal. You feel strong and hopeful. However, without warning; you can be thrown right back into the despair. You can feel like there maybe something seriously wrong with you. How could anyone experience these range of emotions?

You wonder some days, will this journey ever end? Will I ever see my son or daughter turn from their rebellious ways? Will I be able to push through another day again?

I believe we can talk to God like a friend, and that is just what I do. I tell Him exactly how I feel. I no longer shove my hurt and pain away, but I bring it to the One that can do something about it. After I talk with God as my friend, I pray to Him like my Father. Sometimes during this I cry, I weep, and sometimes I sit still before Him.

It is okay to tell God how you really feel. Here is my poem expressing to God how I feel about my prodigal son:

Lord, you see my pain and my tears,
You know my fears.
I am tired and weak,
But your face I will seek.
Where else can I run but to you?
This journey has been quite the ride,
And I often feel afflicted on every side.
My hope is in you!
I feel angry and sad, and
Sometimes I feel mad.
Is it over yet, Lord?
My heart is overwhelmed with grief,
But I know you will bring me relief.
My hope is in you!

Our hope is in Jesus Christ, not our child! Hold on tightly to Jesus, cling to Him. He has heard every prayer concerning your child. He has seen every tear you have cried. IF YOU NEED TO CRY, THEN CRY. IF YOU NEED TIME TO YOURSELF, THEN TAKE TIME TO GET REFRESHED. ENJOY YOUR LIFE AS YOU ARE ON THIS JOURNEY, AND LET GOD TAKE OVER WHERE YOU ARE NOT ABLE TO!

Share your story with me as a prodigal parent. I would love to hear from you, and share support and prayers. Blessings to you as you go through this journey.




Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Counselor's Corner: Healing from Trauma

→What is trauma?
A deeply distressing experience, or a very difficult or unpleasant experience that causes someone to have mental or emotional problems usually for a long time.


Trauma can occur one time like death, natural disasters or accidents, or trauma can be prolonged and repetitive like abusive relationships, family with addictions, or combat.


Trauma that causes the most mental health issues are prolonged and repeated traumas and trauma that occurs from people especially parent-child relationships.



→What is a traumatic event?
Extreme stress that overwhelms a person’s ability to cope and overwhelms a person emotionally, cognitively and physically.


→Symptoms of trauma:
·Hypervigilant/guarded
·Easily startled
·Sensitive to certain noises
·Feeling on edge
·Depression/anxiety
·Overwhelming feelings of guilt
·Intrusive thoughts of trauma
·Disconnected from others and difficulty trusting others
·Difficulty handling stress
·Emotional numbness


→Long-term effects of trauma can include:
·Substance and alc…

Counselor's Corner: Overcoming the Fear of Failure

Fear of failure occurs when you have tried to accomplish a goal or a task and either had setbacks, delays or no progress at all. Usually the fear of failure does not happen the first attempt at a desired outcome but afterrepeated attempts to achieve your dream or destiny.



Failure is mostly based on your perception, in other words, if you keep trying after not succeeding do you give up or keep trying? If you perceive that you are a failure and whatever you do will fail, you will not keep trying. If you believe that failure only occurs if you stop trying than you likely will continue to pursue your dreams.


I had great ambitions to become a published author. I set out on my mission to publish my first book, and I did several years ago. The problem is that even though I did have my book published, the sales of that book only covered the expenses of what I paid the publisher. I did not make a large profit and became terrified to write another book. I knew I was supposed to write another bo…

Counselor's Corner: Enjoying Life Again After Trauma

*See articles, Healing from Trauma,Healing from Emotional Pain and Trauma and God, Why did You Allow this to Happen


If you have endured any type of trauma, learning to enjoy life again will part of your healing journey. For many people who have lived through traumatic experiences whether one time or recurrent trauma’s, the brain and body goes into a protective mode by shielding itself from any further danger. This protective mode is only supposed to last until you can cope with the initial shock of the trauma. I am sure you have heard of people who are described as going into “shock” when someone they love passes away. After the initial shock wear’s off, most people begin the healing process, but for some the trauma is too difficult for them to process and they remain stuck in the time that the trauma. Repressing trauma is seen frequently in people who have a history of past trauma’s such as childhood abuse. Other ways one does not deal with the trauma they experienced is through drug …