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Geena Conde

Prodigal Daughter Meditation


Lets take a few seconds to pause and recall that we are at this moment as we are in
every moment of our life in the presence of the God who made us and redeemed us; the
God who loves us.
Let us pray: Dear God, send your Holy Spirit upon us, and upon this time of KAIROS.
Send your Spirit to challenge us: to challenge our settled habits, our way of looking at
ourselves, our prejudices about other people. Send your Spirit to change us: to set us free
to see new aspects of ourselves and other people. Send your Spirit to comfort and
strengthen us in this often difficult task. This we ask with confidence and hope through
Jesus, our Brother and our Lord, now and forever. Amen!
So far in this retreat, we have asked the question, Who Am I? and given a partial
answer through the sessions this evening:
Why Are You Here? by
Lifegraph by Mrs. OConnell
Know Yourself by Yessenia
This meditation adds something else to the question, Who Am I? It says, I am a
sinner, but its not a bad thing being a sinner because of the kind of Father I have.
Now I am asking you to listen to a story similar to what Jesus told which relates how
God, our Father, deals with sinners. This account is about a girl our age that looses
herself, but is forgiven by her parents in the same way God forgives us. This is the story
of a prodigal daughter.
----There was once a girl named Julie. In her early teenage years she fell into a pattern of
long running battles with her parents. They didnt react too well when she came home
super late at night from partying. They were furious when she stayed out all night without
so much as a phone call to tell them where she was. Her friends werent exactly her
parents first choice either.
One night Julie and her folks have a huge fight. I hate you! she screams at her father as
she slams the door to her bedroom. That night she acts on a plan thats been forming for
some time. Once everyone has gone to sleep she gets dressed, packs a bag and goes into
the kitchen. Opening the kitchen drawer she rifles through her parents wallets. She takes
the credit cards, the cash, and their bankbook. She hops on an uber and heads for

someplace else. She believes that she is making the right choice. She plans to go to a
place so far away that it will be the last place her parents will look for her.
She arrives at her destination and pretty soon shes enjoying the high life a new group
of friends, late nights, sleep all day, no school, no parents hassling her. It doesnt take
long until the money is gone and the credit cards have been cancelled.
Back home her parents are frantic. Her mom had to start packing shelves at night to pay
off the credit card debt, and the money set aside for her sisters university fees is gone.
The police are notified and the streets are searched. Her parents dont know whats
happened. They fear the worst.
Meanwhile, things arent going too well for Julie. Julie becomes depressed because the
money she stole doesnt go too far. She makes unwise decisions in attempt to pay her
debt.
One day shes walking down the street and sees a poster on the telegraph pole. Its headed
Have you seen this girl? Below the heading is a photo of her at least as she used to
look. The posters got her parents phone number on it, and asks for anyone with
information to call. Julie rips the poster down, folds it up and puts it into her pocket.
The months pass, then the years. Julies been careless one time too many. As she sits
lonely, tired and hungry, she looks at the poster shed rescued from that telegraph pole
and saved for the last few years. She thinks back to her previous life as a typical
schoolgirl in a middle class suburban family. It triggers memories of the famous family
water fight one steaming summer day when she was 12; and of crazy moments dancing
with her father; of her sisters comforting arms whenever she felt sad. God, why did I
leave? she says to herself. Even the family dog lives a better life than I do. Shes
sobbing now, and knows that more than anything she wants to go home.
Three straight phone calls, three connections with the answering machine. She hangs up
without leaving a message the first two times, but the third time she says, Mom, dad, its
me. I was wondering about maybe coming home.
The next day on the way back to her home, she thinks about all the flaws in her plan.
What if her mom and dad were out and miss the message? And what are they going to do
if they heard it anyway after all, its been 10 years and they havent heard a word from
me in all that time.? If they do show up what on earth am I going to say?
Soon she arrives right outside the step of her house. This is it. Oh well, get ready for
nothing.
Julie steps into the house not knowing what to expect. At first, she doesnt think anyone

is home until she hears someone call her name. She then turns and sees her mom and dad
and her aunts and uncles and cousins and grandmother. Theyre holding a banner that
reads Welcome home, and everyones wearing goofy party hats and throwing streamers
and popping party poppers.
However, Julie noticed that her older sister was not happy. Her sister did not believe that
Julie should not have been welcomed back with open arms while she herself worked so
hard to get the perfect grades and be the best child she could be.
Meanwhile, Julies mom and dad run toward Julie, tears streaming down their face, arms
held wide. Julie cant move. Her parents grab her with such force it almost knocks her
over.
Dad, Im sorry. I know Julie exclaims
Her father responds, Hush child. Forget the apologies. All we care about is that youre
home. I just want to hold you. Come on, everyones waiting. And Julie finds herself
awash in a sea of family and love that she has not known for over 10 years.
------Now, as you just heard, the story of the prodigal son or in this case daughter is much
more than a parable told long ago. There are many Julies in this world today who loose
themselves and make unwise choices. However, we have to know that God is waiting for
us to return to him.
The parable is also a story that is lived out in each one of our lives. It continues to speak,
to open hearts, and to change lives because it portrays our daily drama with shocking
clarity and uncovers those desires closest to our heart that we tend to forget or ignore so
often.
The most striking element of the parable is the fathers festive and loving welcome of the
returning son. In Julies case, her own family welcomed her with open arms and
embraced her return. Like Julies family, God is merciful. God is always willing to
forgive.
Now I want you to review and examine your lifethe times you were like the prodigal,
the times when you were like the sister in Julies case, and the times when God has been
there, always at your side, waiting for your return, with love and mercy and forgiveness.
We have a father who loves us to the point of not treating us the way we deserve to be
treated, but far better than we deserve to be treated. I hope you can believe this. Think
about it. Our Father loves us and is there waiting with an outstretched hand. Do you
believe this?