The vision for what would become Beloved Prodigal was birthed with a yearning the Lord planted within a returned Prodigal. Anna Smit was attending Mary DeMuth‘s writer intensive in Burtigny, Switzerland in October 2016 (it’s happening again Oct. 30 – Nov. 3- come be bathed in God’s kindness and encouragement as a writer at the YWAM base). Mary invited the writers present to draft chapter titles for a book, giving a short description for each chapter. She gave an example from her own work, which she based around a particular passage of Scripture. Anna immediately knew what her heart yearned to write about- the story of Peter’s turning away and his redemption and calling in Christ.
Anna copied the exact words from Scripture for her chapter headings, telling Peter’s story from the moment the LORD foretold his turning away, until the LORD’s redemptive calling upon Peter’s life, after the resurrection. And for each chapter description she briefly shared the aspects of her own experience as a Prodigal, which mirrored the Scriptural chapter headings she had taken from the record of Peter’s experience. As she sat to read it aloud at the writer intensive, those present were visibly moved, especially a mother of a Prodigal, who told her how much it encouraged her.
A few years ago, God used the story of Peter to deeply bless Anna. He showed her that just as in Peter’s case, her turning away in fear and shame was purposed for good. Just like with Peter, the LORD foresaw the enemy’s attack and began praying for Anna, even before it hit, so that upon her return her experiences could be used by God to bless not only her own life, but also His Body. And each year since her return He has revealed more and more of His fingerprints all over those more than twenty years and His purpose through the fear, grief and shame of her story.
Upon her return from Switzerland, Anna entered a period of waiting upon the Lord. She withdrew from her own blog and social media and sought the LORD’s will. It is during this waiting that God grew the yearning He had birthed within Anna in Switzerland. A yearning that led to the opening of Beloved Prodigal.
It is Anna’s prayer, hope and dream that this place would become a living testimony to the awesome power and eternally tethering love of our LORD. She has witnessed this power and tethering love in her own Prodigal life and in the lives of dear friends and is excited to see what the LORD will do in the lives of other Prodigals and their loved ones.
We invite you to join Anna and her prayer warrior and writer friends, as we gather in faith, hope and love to see God call His Prodigals home. For more information visit Our Vision and Prayer.