Deuteronomy 6:4-5 (NLT)
4 �Listen, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. 5 And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength.

For the Jews these were two of the choicest verses. They wrote it in their phylacteries and they felt obliged to say these words at least twice every day. They were very happy in being so obliged, having this saying among them, Blessed are we, who every morning and evening say, Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord. But more blessed are we if we duly consider and improve,



At the age of 19, Abraham Piper, the son of well known pastor and author John Piper, walked away from his Christian faith. For the next four years, in his words, he "just wanted to drink gallons of cheap sangria and sleep around." Of course his parents were "brokenhearted and baffled." After four years of living as a prodigal son, Abraham returned to the Lord and reunited with his parents. Based on his experience, he offers the following advice to mothers and fathers of wayward children:

Don't expect them to be Christlike. If your son is not a Christian, he won't act like one, and it's hypocrisy if he does �. His most dangerous problem is unbelief�not partying. No matter how your child's behavior proves his unbelief, always be sure to focus more on his heart's sickness than its symptoms.

Welcome them home. If he has any inkling to be with you, don't make it hard for him �. Obviously there are instances when parents must give ultimatums: "Don't come to this house, if you are �" But these will be rare �. [In most cases], if your daughter stinks like weed or an ashtray, spray her jacket with Febreeze and change the sheets when she leaves, but let her come home. If you find out she's pregnant, then buy her folic acid, take her to her 20-week ultrasound, protect her from Planned Parenthood, and by all means let her come home. If your son is broke because he spent all the money you lent him on loose women and ritzy liquor, then forgive his debt as you've been forgiven, don't give him any more money�and let him come home. If he hasn't been around for a week and a half because he's been staying at his girlfriend's�or boyfriend's�apartment, urge him not to go back, and let him come home.

Point them to Christ. Your rebellious child's real problem is not drugs or sex or cigarettes or porn or laziness or crime or cussing or slovenliness or homosexuality or being in a punk band. The real problem is that your child doesn't see Jesus clearly �. [Jesus] will replace the money, or the praise of man, or the high, or the sex that they are staking their eternities on right now. Only his grace can draw them from their perilous pursuits and bind them safely to him�captive, but satisfied. [Abraham Piper, �12 Ways to Love Your Wayward Child,� desiring God.com (5-9-07)

Unfortunately many of us don�t realize at times we also have a problem of now allowing The Lord into our lives. We don�t allow The Lord to fill the voids in our lives, but instead we seek out other things to fill us. Love God with all your heart, all your soul and all your strength and God himself will pull you through the trials of life.