What is your story? Have you been successful, but at the wrong things? Have you done well in “doing” but neglected “being” a husband or father to you family?

Have you invested yourself in others but failed to invest in your own family and now you have come to understand that you gave the best part of your life in things that really do not matter or do not last and to people that don’t remember your name? Have you tried to be a husband or father but you failed so you turned your energies at other things? 

If so, you probably are a prodigal.


(A modern-day parable adapted from Luke 15:11-24. By Bill Putman August 9, 2004)

A man had a wife and two sons; and the younger son said to his father, “Father, give me some of your time” “Please play with me”, “please listen to me”, “please help me know I am loved” “Please be a daddy and a dad to me”.

But the father gave himself to his work. He took from his earnings and provided a house to live in and clothes for the boys to wear. He paid for their health and schooling and told himself he was doing right by his wife and the boys.

For most of his marriage and parenting he went out from his home and mentally and emotionally, he took his journey into the far country. He gathered up all his personal dreams and interests and poured his time into his work, his responsibilities. He took any of his extra time and spent it with his friends and his hobbies and toys and other things that did not include his wife and sons. 

And when he had spent his energy and riches on things that did not really satisfy, and on companions who were not his friends, there arose a famine in his heart and he began to long for a home and not a house, of being a true friend and companion to his wife and he longed for children and grandchildren who would share his life.

And when finally came to his senses, he said to himself, “How many of my friends have found true happiness with their wife and children and I am so empty and alone. I will go home. I will say to my wife and my children, “I have sinned against God and you. I am no longer worthy to be called your husband or your dad. Please let me be here to be as a servant to meet your needs.”

And so, he returned home to his wife and his children. And when his wife and one son saw him returning with a changed heart towards God and them, they were filled with love and compassion, and they ran to their husband and father and embraced him, and kissed him. He said to his wife and son, “I have sinned against both God and you and I am no longer worthy of being called your husband and father”.

But his wife and child said to each other, “quick! Let us welcome our husband and father, let us have a party, for this husband and father of ours was dead and has returned to life. He was lost, but now he is found.” So, the party began.

Meanwhile, the older son was away at work. He heard that his father had returned and that his mother and brother were giving him a party he asked, “Why are you welcoming him back? He was never there for us and he squandered his money and yet you are giving him a party and welcoming him home? If I were in charge, I would make his life miserable!”

And his mother and brother said, we had to celebrate this happy day. For your father was dead and has come back to life! He was lost, but now is found”.

Adapted by Bill Putman – August 9, 2004


“Lord, I have been the prodigal husband and father who invested so much time in his work and his ministry that I was not really a husband and dad. I have had to come home to You and my family and ask forgiveness. 

I have been the prodigal’s father who worked for You but not spent time with You. 

I have given my life to do what made me feel good about myself but failed to be the husband and father You intended me to be and the man my family needed.

Father, please forgive me and restore me to you. 

Please let me grow to become the husband you want me to be and the man my wife needs me to be.

Please help my children forgive me and let our relationship be healed”.

Thank you, Father. 

Your little boy Billy.”


Sin, no matter who sinned either leaves an open wound, a scabbed over wound or a scar.

The reality is that even if the wound is healed it turns into a scar and is a visible reminder of the neglect, abuse or sin. 

My prayer is that I live long enough that when those I failed think of me, that they not only remember my sins and failures but with those hurtful memories, that you will remember the changers the Lord has made in my life.