their good and for God's glory that they turn from their sin. Perhaps we do not fully realize the detrimental effects of sin. Maybe we don't accept fully what God says about sin. He says that sin leads to death!
If we could REALLY look at sin for what it is, we would be praying harder for those wandering sheep to be returned to the fold no matter the cost. I know these things seem harsh and unloving. But honestly it may be the MOST loving thing we can do for them. Suffering for a little while for the sake of freedom and relationship with our Lord. (no suffering can compare to the surpassing glory) It was mentioned that we would really need to search ourselves when doing this. I totally agree. But also feel it is important for me to mention that I am in NO WAY above falling. I know that I too could give way to a sinful life. I know this because I did early in my walk with the Lord. I lived in darkness for almost a decade. So as much as I am aware of my own fragile state, I know my redeemer lives. I know that I have been bought by a price and that He can keep me if I will submit to being kept. I am part of His beloved and I am His child. I am a victor and I am serving a mighty and awesome God.
Of course I pray for God's mercy on them as I pray that God would do what it takes to return them back and restore them. I wait with open arms for a loved one who has wandered far away from God. My biggest prayer for her is that she will respond to His prompting quickly. I pray that God will open the eyes of her understanding and heart to see how far away she is. I pray that she will run back into the arms of her savior.
Sin not only tarnishes our ability to reflect Christ it also blocks our ability to see God around us, hear Him and see His perspective.
So my prayer is for the Lord to get their attention in whatever manner necessary, for them to confess their sin, and to repent*. Then my prayer is that the broken relationships both earthly and divinely would be restored. That the land that the locust ate would be restored.
Regarding confession, and repentance (*more simple stated: God breaks them from turning to the world, they agree with God about their sin, they turn from it and walk in righteousness in Christ)