Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons. 12 The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them. Luke 15:11-12
When Aaron and I moved into Harvest House I had this vision of being family for young women who didn’t have a good family structure. We were not trying to replace family that already existed, just trying to come alongside them in the same way we would our own children. Some of the girls embraced the idea and joined in our family life in a very natural, regular way. Others chose to keep more of a distance, and that is fine too. What breaks my heart are the ones who choose more of a prodigal son approach.
I was remembering some of the different situations we have been in with young ladies and really lamenting how some said they wanted life change but weren’t really willing to listen to wisdom or any instruction from the people who were coming alongside them – us, mentors, pastors, etc. I was reminded that the Father in the story of the prodigal son “divided his property between them” and let his son go. The story doesn’t say he tried to talk the son out of leaving or he put up a fight. It almost seems like he recognized his son’s heart was stubborn and so the Father let him leave and make those hard choices with the consequences that come with them.
In the same way, we had to let some of these women go long before we were ready, while we know there is still work to be done. Fortunately, most have kept open lines of communication with us so, just like the Father, when they come back and want help or wisdom, we are here and able to offer it.
Some move out days are joyful and celebratory, some hurt in the deep places of my heart where I just wanted to have control that is not mine to have. Pray for all these ladies – each is a valuable life and God is never done with them, even if their time living in this house has come to an end.