A few years ago, I helped with a “busy student retreat” at a Newman Center. Over the course of a long weekend, several young women from the university signed up for daily spiritual direction appointments with me. I vividly remember the eagerness of these beautiful women who deeply desired to grow in prayer.
During this short retreat, I assigned Scripture passages for the women to bring to their Holy Hours. I sincerely desired that the women would know Our Father’s gaze of love and relax into His delight. The women met with me individually to share about their experiences in prayer. It was an incredible grace to have a front row seat to the Father’s mercy.
In one appointment, I encountered a young woman whose eyes sparkled with joy as she described the New Life she recently found in Jesus Christ. When I suggested that she pray with the Parable of the Prodigal Son from Luke 15, I noticed a puzzled look on her face. She inquired with curiosity, “Who is the Prodigal Son?”
At that moment, I immediately recognized the enormous contrast in our lives. My childhood included Mass, family prayer, Bible and Saint stories, Catholic School, Vacation Bible School, Scripture memory songs, and charismatic prayer meetings. The parable of the Prodigal Son is such a familiar story to me. Sometimes I unintentionally tune out when I hear it being proclaimed at Mass.
But on this retreat, I proclaimed this parable to a woman who had never heard the story of the Prodigal Son. She was on the edge of her seat as I summarized the journey of the younger son and the jealousy of the older son. And her eyes were filled with tears as she heard about the love of Our Good Father.
Sisters, today, I encourage you to crack open your Bible to Luke 15. As you hold the Sacred Scriptures in your hand, remember that Our Father is waiting there for you. Let the Father run to you, embrace you, and kiss you as you come home.
Our Father rejoices that you dwell in His home.As you hold the Sacred Scriptures in your hand, remember that Our Father is waiting there for you. // Rose Coleman Click To Tweet
Read this deep-dive into things you may have not known about the Prodigal Son.
Rose Coleman is a contemplative in action who delights in all things beautiful. Her adventurous heart has traveled many places—from circumnavigating the globe on a ship during college to some years in the convent as a religious sister. Exuberant from her childhood, she is an elementary school teacher who learns so much from her students. She is a contributing author to our children’s devotional prayer book called Rise Up and the author of our Blessed Conversations: Ways to Pray study found here. You can find out more about her here.