In 1757, at the age of 22, pastor and hymnist Robert Robinson penned the words to the song “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.” Verse four’s conclusion mimics Jesus’ story of the prodigal son: Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, Prone to leave the God I love.
Happily for the prodigal, he came to his senses and said to himself …“I will go home to my father and say, ‘Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you…Please take me on as a hired servant (Luke 15:17-19 NLT)’”
Becoming a believer at the age of nine didn’t seal my perfection. I’ve wandered down a few stray paths during the course of my spiritual journey. These forays have always been initiated because I-like Adam and Eve, had a wrong desire and craved forbidden fruit instead of God things.
When I-with God’s assistance, failed to take these unhealthy desires captive, I found myself making decisions to depart for far countries. And I didn’t necessarily have to change geographical positions to get there. Just my spiritual mindset and focus.
Usually after only a short period in these strange places, I discovered I’d been duped. The grass wasn’t greener after all. Nor was the relationship more invigorating or the habit healthier. They just claimed to be.
Staying too long in the far country led to spiritual defeat. God could still use me, but he wouldn’t because I was dishonoring his name. So he threw in a spirit of despair and desperation that caused my eyes to turn toward home. And each time I ran back home, I discovered restoration.
And that’s the good news. God’s chances for renewal and restoration don’t stop with two. No matter how many times we fail, he’s always waiting with open arms for us to return.
Prayer: Thank You merciful Lord that our proneness to wander doesn’t lead You to turn us away when we come running back after realizing our mistakes.
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