The Painful Path of a Prodigal

Author: Craig K. Svensson
Paperback, 160 pages
ISBN 9781633421646

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About the book

Parents of prodigals struggle deeply with the challenges they face of relating to their wayward offspring. Siblings, spouses, and children of prodigals face similar struggles. How do you live for Christ in the midst of such personal turmoil? How do you live with a grown child whose destructive choices have turned him into a person so much unlike the adorable offspring into whom you poured much of yourself? Ultimately, how do you bear the pain if that prodigal never returns?

In this book, Dr. Craig Svensson and his wife, Sue, show how they are no strangers to such deeply devastating circumstances. Svensson sensitively, engagingly, and compassionately directs readers to Scripture as he helps create the biblical framework for addressing the trauma of having a prodigal in the family.


Craig Svensson has written a very moving and very needed book with a unique perspective for parents of prodigal children. While clearly hope-giving, this book is also filled with biblical candor and lament, as well as wisdom-for-parenting-life.
—Bob Kellemen, Ph.D., VP/Academic Dean at Faith Bible Seminary, Lafayette, Indiana

For pastors, counselors, mentors, and friends of the parents of prodigals, Dr. Svensson’s work should be the first resource they read to provide the most helpful guidance during this life-consuming trial.”
—Brent Aucoin, Ph.D., Pastor of Seminary and Soul Care Ministries, Faith Church, Lafayette, Indiana

About the author

Dr. Craig K. Svensson and Sue, his wife of over thirty-five years, have walked the difficult journey of parenting a prodigal who died after a fifteen-year descent into drug abuse and its attendant destructive lifestyle. Craig has served as a Bible teacher, interim preacher, a seminary board chair, a mission agency board chair, and as a visiting lecturer at the Bryansk Bible Institute and Seminary in Russia. He has worked with Sue as they have directed the ministry of their church to the homeless in their community since 2008. They live in West LaFayette, Indiana, where they serve with Faith Church. Craig is a pharmacist-scientist who has served as a university professor and administrator. Find out more at

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1 customer review
5 out of 5 stars

The Painful Path of a Prodigal

December 07, 2020

Dr. Svensson writes powerfully and in great depth of experience about the death of his prodigal son. I find his gentle candor and transparency of his personal life experiences mixed in with a rich tapestry of directed teaching toward the hope we have in Christ via the Word of God appealed to my heart in a very rich way. Nothing shallow here, yet it is written with a simple, very understandable compassion that anyone who is hurting could identify with their depth of struggle to "trust God in the valley".

Russ Wahl

Shepherd Press