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Vanessa Van Deudekom

Prodigal Daughter Meditation

Lets take a few seconds to pause and recall that we are at this moment
as we are in every moment of our lifein the presence of the God who
made us and redeemed us; the God who loves us
Let us pray: Dear God, send your Holy Spirit upon us, and upon this time of
Kairos. Send your Spirit to challenge us: to challenge our settled habits, our
way of looking at ourselves, our prejudices about other people. Send us
your Spirit to change us: to set us free to see new aspects of ourselves and
other people. Send your Spirit to comfort and strengthen us in this often
difficult task. This we ask with confidence and hope through Jesus, our
Brother and our Lord, now and forever. Amen!
So far in this retreat, we have asked the question, Who Am I? and given a
partial answer through the session this evening:
Lifegraph by: Mrs. Connell
And especially through Know Yourself by: Karinna
This meditation adds something else to the question, Who am I? It says,
I am a sinner, but its not that bad being a sinner because of the kind of
Father I have.
Now I am asking you to listen to a story that Jesus told which relates how
God, as our Father, deals with sinners. I know you have heard it before, but
listen as though you are hearing it for the first time. Try to remember just
one word from it that especially says something to you.
This account is about a girl our age that makes a lot of wrong choices in
her life. She is shown forgiveness by her parents, just as God does. Here is
the story of the Prodigal Daughter!

There once was a girl named Michelle. Her family loved her to pieces. She
took this love for granted, and went out partying daily. They never
appreciated her choices, but she continued to use the excuse, If you loved
me you would let me go out for the night.

She went out every night, whether it was with her boyfriend, who is 7 years
older than her. Or her friends who party every night. But the thing is, her
parents dont approve of her boyfriend or choice of friends. They never tell
her though because they love her so much. Her grades started to drop
drastically. She went from an honors student to failing multiple classes. It
got so bad that she started to feel uncomfortable at home.
She finally made a decision to move out with her boyfriend. Her parents did
not like it at all, but they did not say anything. She moved out within 2
weeks time. She was living the high life. She could go out anytime without
being judged, go to sleep whenever, not have to go to school anymore,
since she dropped out, and not feel like she is being judged by her parents.
It had been a great 2 years for her. Until her boyfriend dumped her
because he met another girl. He kicked her out of his apartment, and she
was left homeless with nowhere to go. The only place she could think of
going is back home.
Along the way home, she kept asking herself: Will they take me back? How
much trouble will I be in? Will I be grounded for one year or two years? She
finally made it home and knocked on the door. At that moment she was
ready to turn around and bolt, but it was too late. The door was cracked
open, and she hears her father say, Michelle? Michelle turns around, and
her fathers eyes light up. He quickly calls to his wife and son to come
quick. Both parents bolt to her and shower her in hugs and kisses, while
the older brother is in the background scolding her. The parents ask her if
she is hungry and what she wants to eat. Mom goes in to prepare the food
while Dad talks to Michelle. The older brother follows Mom into the kitchen
to help cook dinner. While cooking dinner, the brother asks her arent you
and Dad mad at Michelle for leaving the family, and why arent you guys
going to punish her. Mom replies with, You have shown youre a true son
to the family, and everything that is ours is also yours. Now Michelle has
returned home and we must celebrate for we thought she was gone

Now, remember how I asked you to just remember one word from the
story? Well here are the words I took from the Prodigal Daughter.

Everyone has them, and everyone will continue to make mistakes. That is
just a part of growing up and succeeding. Mistakes is what makes us
children of God. Without our mistakes Jesus would not have given up his
life to save us. It is perfectly ok to make mistakes as long as you learn from
them and try to improve to be the person you want to be, a Child of God.
It relates back to the word Mistake. Without mistakes we would not need
forgiveness. Not only should we be forgiven, but we should also be doing
the forgiving. The Bible says, Be kind to one another, tenderhearted,
forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you (Ephesians 4:32).
Forgiveness is key to every relationship with someone and even God.
The Father and Mother in the story, as well as our heavenly God shows the
greatest love there is, unconditional love. We should be models of this love.
Im not asking you to love everyone, but just try and show respect towards
them. Everyone has a purpose in life, and we all need to recognize that,
and show respect towards every individual.
I have given you the three words I have seen through the story of the
Prodigal Daughter, now I hope that you guys will meditate on this story and
come up with your own words, and apply them to your own lives.
Finally, I want you to review and examine your life the times when you
were like the prodigal daughter, or the times you were like the older
brother, and the times when God has been there, always at your side,
waiting for your return, with love, mercy, and forgiveness.
We have a Father who loves us to the point of not treating us the way we
deserve to be treated, but far better than we deserve to be treated. I hope
you can believe this. Think about it. Our Father loves us and is there
waiting with outstretched arms. Do you believe this?