Itís Time to Come Home

ďSometimes what you fear the most is the very thing that will set you free.Ē (Robert Tew) Fear is something that we often live with like a second skin. It becomes second nature and we tolerate the way it feels because itís what we know, itís the place we are choosing to live.
Diana Martin was intimately acquainted with fear, not only for herself but her children, particularly her son who was on a downward spiral of drugs and alcohol and spending more time locked up than walking in freedom. She feared for her grandchildren, her sonís children, because they were trapped in the consequences of their parentsí choices.
She had been through a divorce herself and her self-worth was in shambles. Itís difficult to help another up when you are wounded yourself. But Diana knew the Lord and when God is fighting for you, nothing can stop you.
In 2000, something changed. Diana was no longer willing to stand by and watch her son spin out of control. On a visit to the county jail, she told him she couldnít do this anymore. ďI canít be involved in your dysfunction any longer. You need to change and get your life in order. I wonít be back to visit you until you are ready to change and get your life right before God. Itís time to walk the walk and not just talk the talk.Ē
Her heart was broken. She loved her son so much but he was bound in sin. Enabling him would not set him free; it was time for some tough love with her daughterís support.
She may have been absent physically, but her prayers were always with him. Diana prayed and she claimed the promises in Scripture for her son. They included John 10:10, ďThe thief (Satan) comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I (Jesus) have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.Ē(NIV) And Proverbs 3:5-6, ďTrust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways submit (acknowledge) Him and He will make your paths straight.Ē (NIV)
A motherís heart saw the redemption that was possible through Jesus Christ. More hard times followed. Her son was released from jail but continued down the wrong path. He and his children were living in a meth house and then became homeless while his addiction continued to control his life and his choices.
At this point, Diana decided she needed to work on herself and leave her son and grandchildren in the Lordís hands. Just as Abraham was willing to place his son, Isaac, on the altar and offer him as a sacrifice to the Lord, Diana gave her son and grandchildren to the Lord.
Transformation began in her life as God began to purify her and heal old wounds while exposing the lies the devil was speaking to her. From 2 Kings 18:18 God spoke to her, ďDiana, how long will you falter between two opinions? If the Lord be God, follow Him.Ē
Some months later in September 2000, her son was arrested again and this time he decided it was time to change. Diana received a prophetic word that in three months her son would no longer be involved with drugs. ďGod is doing and is going to do a great thing in his life.Ē
This mother could have doubted the Lord after her sonís track record but she decided to change her thoughts. Keeping her eyes on God and His Word, she did not look at the facts and circumstances but believed that her son would be okay. Miraculously three months later, he was released from jail and came to live with his mother.
That same day, as they drove home they noticed there was a church across the street from her apartment, Foundation Ministries which later became Spokane Dream Center. Her son called the church and met with Pastor Dave. This began the healing and transformation that was necessary to turn his life around. Today Vince Martin is an Associate Pastor at Spokane Dream Center and the Program Director of the Menís Discipleship Program. He is instrumental in helping other men turn their lives around because of the work God did in him.
What about you? You may be the parent of a prodigal son or daughter, what encouragement is there for your situation? Diana shared what got her through her darkest days.
1. Believe the promises of God. Hide His word in your heart so that you know the truth according to what God says. Align your thoughts with the word of God. Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
2. What fruit are you producing? Examine what you are believing and the wisdom you are receiving. Godly wisdom comes from above while confusion comes from the world.
3. Nothing is impossible with God. Miracles do happen. Find a church that is rooted in the word of God that will stand with you. Then pray and believe that the circumstances will change. Listen to Godís voice and He will direct your path.
Out of lifeís chaos come the blessings of the Lord. God does not waste any circumstance in our lives. He uses everything for His glory. Today Diana has the opportunity to sow hope into others. For the last five years, she has been a teacher at Dream Centerís Womenís Discipleship Program and is able to encourage the women to know who they are in Christ. Many of them came from similar circumstances as her son. Diana brings the heart of a mother who knows the transformation that occurs when we surrender to God.
She also leads a womenís bible study group. Because of her own journey, Diana has a heart for the wounded and broken-hearted. Together these women are growing in their walk with Christ while building new strongholds of faith in alignment with Godís word.
ďI am truly beginning to live the life God has for me to live,Ē Diana said. God is a God of deliverance, healing, restoration and miracles. Nothing is too difficult for Him.
If you are the parent of a wayward child, donít give up. God loves you and your child. Diana learned that being filled with anxiety and fear did not help her or her son, but trusting in God and believing in His word brought her peace and allowed God to work through her. He is waiting to help you.
If you are that wayward child, itís time to come home. Your heavenly Father loves you so much and He is willing to receive you just as you are. It doesnít matter what you have done. Bring your burdens to Him. Accept His love and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. And exchange your old life for a new one that offers hope and a second chance. Find a church that will support you in your new walk. Call your family and let them know you are ready to start over.
On April 4th at the INB Performing Arts Center at 334 Spokane Falls Blvd in downtown Spokane, Spokane Dream Center will present Behold Jesus, the story of his life and ministry. On stage you will see Jesusí life from his childhood through his teachings, crucifixion and resurrection, and then a glimpse of heaven. The cast of about 150 people, including Diana and her son, represent changed lives, people just like you and me who have found a second chance in Jesus. There are two performances, 1 pm and 6:30 pm, and itís free.
Wayward child, if youíre not ready to walk through the doors of a church, come to the INB and you will find the opportunity to learn more about Jesus. Itís time to come home.