Did she cry? Run after him? Plead one more time that he stay? What did she feel, standing in the doorway, watching her son stride out of her life? Jesus didn’t mention the prodigal’s mother in Luke 15, but what if she lived the story too? How did she face her grief and learn to live through the unthinkable? What can we learn from her? Her story may be yours… for places change and faces change, but people are pretty much the same. Her son’s journey from father to far country and back again is well-known. His mother’s response remains a mystery. Let’s look at the signposts that might have marked this mother’s path of grief.
GOD’S PRINCIPLES: Are you limping along a parallel path with the prodigal’s mother? The Man of sorrows knows your pain. Jesus walked grief’s road and left us a map to follow. Bible truth tames the toughest terrain. Jesus’ encounter with another headstrong heart in Mark 10:17-22 reveals five principles to help you reach a rebellious son or daughter before they head out the door and down the road.
When the disciples despaired for his soul, Jesus reminded them, “With men it is impossible, but not with God; for with God all things are possible” (Mark 10:27). Self-will’s roadside cafes are supplied with bitter fruit. (See Proverbs 1:31.) Suppers with swine can bring a prodigal to himself. Even in a full castle, an empty heart can turn a rich young ruler home.
*5 steps of grief adapted from On Death and Dying by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross