Today’s message is from Bob, who was a prodigal who returned home and was remarried to me for an additional 23 years before the Lord took him home to Heaven. Bob wrote 19 books from the prodigal’s perspective for more than two decades after our divorce and remarriage. – Charlyne
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
One of our family’s most memorable trips was many years ago to Chicago. We had been invited to Pacific Garden Mission, a large Christian Rescue Mission, to watch our testimony be recorded for radio broadcasts around the world on their program, Unshackled! On that Saturday evening, we also ate dinner with homeless men and women who had come in from the snow-covered streets of Chicago. Many of them were saved and delivered that night at the revival service that followed.
Each month we receive a beautiful newsletter from Pacific Garden Mission. One cover story was titled, The Mystery of the Old Safe. Long before any present staff was there, someone donated an old antique safe to the Mission. It has always been reported to be empty, but no one knew the combination. The decision was made to dispose of the old safe, but the administration wanted it opened first to confirm that it was empty. Jokingly, the president of PGM asked a group of men enrolled in their Bible Academy if anyone had experience in safe cracking in their years of living in sin. The safe was finally opened, and accurate to the rumor was found to be empty.
That report brought to mind a Sunday when we were at a church in Ft Lauderdale and discovered our keys were locked inside the car. The pastor asked for help, and no less than six men went digging through the trunk of their car for slim jims, the yardstick-shaped instrument used to open locked vehicles. While they were working unsuccessfully in the noonday heat to open our car, the pastor joked, “Praise God, they’ve all lost their touch since they got saved!” Whether it is a safe or a Slim Jim, isn’t it a blessing when we can look back at where we have come from, look at the enemy in fact, and laugh at the evil one?
There is a locked safe in your home. The words Covenant Marriage are engraved on the front. No one knows what is inside, but all around you, people were telling you it was empty, with nothing of value inside. They may have even suggested that you throw the thing out. We have a Master Safe Cracker in Jesus Christ who can open any marriage safe. Now that your marriage safe is opened, you will see that your marriage contains not trash but treasure. You will join the many others of us who say, “Thank You, Lord. I almost tossed it out.”
That old Slim Jim of adultery, abuse, or addiction that may have been used to disrupt your marriage is not needed now that Jesus Christ has opened your family’s safe. Your prodigal may have even forgotten about that Slim Jim. Our prayer is that like the friends who helped me open my car, your prodigal will also forget about that former life of sin and continually look to the restoration power of Jesus Christ.
Never forget that God created marriage and every marriage is a treasure in the Lord’s eyes. Seek the Lord and as you pray. He will close the doors of temptations from the enemy of the world.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6
There was so much locked inside of my husband and me before his affair. Treasures we never knew existed until it was opened during our restoration. God is so good! And I will treasure all of it forever. ❤️🙏🏻