God had just destroyed an enemy for Joshua and the children of Israel, and Joshua reminded them that the Lord would destroy all their enemies the same way (Joshua 10:25).
The Lord will do the same for us. We can stand on what God has done as a foundation of faith for what He will do.
Sometimes we just have to remind ourselves of what we know about the Lord, especially in this walk of loving a prodigal. We have to know who God is!
There are things that have happened in my life that remind me that God is God, that He is real, His love is real, and His power is real.
I know God as Healer, as Jehovah Rapha. I have been healed several times, but I want to share one in particular. I asked my friend, Kim Rossi, to pray for me when I had three lumps in my neck and was scheduled for a biopsy the next week. I didn’t tell Kim where the lumps were, but she laid her hands on either side of my neck, and while she prayed, her right hand moved down toward my left collar bone, where one of the lumps was, and the fingers of her left hand separated to cover just under my right jaw and above my right collar bone, exactly where the other two lumps were. The next week, as I lay prepped and ready for surgery, I located the lump the doctor planned to biopsy. It was smaller but still there. When the doctor came in to mark the spot, I couldn’t find the lump, and she couldn’t either. An ultrasound a few days later confirmed that all three lumps were gone! I know God as Healer.
I know God as Savior, because He saved me! He also saved my husband, parents, daughter, siblings, and many of my family and friends. He has in the future also saved a prodigal whom I love. I know Him as Savior.
I know God as Holy Spirit, because He filled me, uses me, comforts me, makes me physically aware of His presence, shows me evidence daily of His indwelling, reminds me, teaches me. I know God as Holy Spirit.
I know God as Protector from the many times He protected me from accidents, protected my mind, protected my family, my faith, my ministry.
I know God as Lord of Hosts, because I have asked for angels to be sent to fight for a prodigal and felt their presence in opposite corners of the room.
I know God as Deliverer, because He delivered me from besetting sin, and He has delivered former addicts I know from drugs and other addictions.
I know God as truth, because He has never lied to me, and His Word has stood the test of time, a test important to us as mere humans.
I also know God as the One Who cares about even the little things that affect us. Even though this example may seem flippant, let me tell you the story about my daughter’s goldfish, Brat. During a particularly difficult week in my middle-school daughter’s life, God revived her floating goldfish. Brat lived for another year or two after that.
God has revealed Himself to me in different times in my life as the God I needed in that precise circumstance.
In the Bible, God showed Himself by His different names to different people at different moments in their lives, because that was the precise moment they each needed to know Him in that particular way.
- He revealed Himself to Hagar as El Roi, The God Who Sees Me, because in that moment she felt no one saw her or cared about what happened to her and her son (Genesis 16:13).
- He revealed Himself to Abraham as Jehovah Jireh, The Lord Will Provide, when He provided a substitute sacrifice in the stead of his son Isaac (Genesis 22:14).
- He revealed Himself to Moses as Jehovah, the I AM, the self-existent, eternal God, thus establishing the foundation of their very special relationship (Exodus 3:14).
And, because I know without doubt that He did it then, for them and for me personally, I know that He still will.
Isn’t it our hearts’ cry for our prodigals to know God so personally and irrefutably, too? We want them to know for themselves, just like the people of Samaria said the to the woman at the well: “‘Now we believe, not because of what you said, for we ourselves have heard Him and we know that this is indeed the Christ, the Savior of the world’” (John 4:42).
And, with our hearts and mouths we can declare: “I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day” (2 Timothy 1:12).