Most of us have probably heard the story of the prodigal son. If you haven’t, the story is in Luke 15:11-32. It’s basically about a guy with two sons. The youngest of the two asks for his share of the inheritance and sets out to see the world. Not long after he leaves home he has blown through all his cash in “prodigal living” which basically means he partied all his money away. After working for a while feeding pigs, he realized that even the servants on his fathers land had it better than he did at this point. So, he decided that he would go home and beg for his fathers forgiveness. As he was traveling home he prepared this speech that he would say to his father in hopes that his father would allow him to return. The bible says that his father saw him when he was still a great way off and ran to him. Before the son could get halfway through his prepared speech his father cut him off and told the servants to bring out a robe, and start a feast, his son has returned! Now, the other brother heard the music and asked one of the servants what was up, the servant told him that his brother has returned. The older brother got mad because his dad never gave him a party for always being faithful, but as soon as his younger brother returned from blowing all his money on parties and harlots, they have a feast. The father says in Luke 15:32 NKJV, “It was right that we should make merry and be glad, for your brother was dead and is alive again, and was lost and is found.” I really like this story because it reminds me of my own, except for the older brother part. I was dead in sin and lost to the world. I’ve done my fair share of “prodigal living” that’s for sure, but when I started on my way back home, my Father welcomed me with open arms. The Lord doesn’t care where you have been, He cares where you are going. It doesn’t matter how far away you have traveled from home, your Father will always welcome you back. Luke 15:10 NKJV, “Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
Luke 12 is awesome. I used a highlighter on almost the whole chapter. If you haven’t read it, I strongly suggest that you do. To be honest though, there was a couple verses in there that got me a little worried. Luke 12:45-47 NLT, “But if the servant thinks, ‘My master won’t be back for a while,’ and begins oppressing the other servants, partying, and getting drunk- well, the master will return unannounced and unexpected. He will tear the servant apart and banish him with the unfaithful. The servant will be severely punished, for though he knew his duty, he refused to do it.” To me, these verses are basically saying that even if you think you are saved, if you are hammered at a party when God decides to come back, it’s probably not going to end well. We don’t know when God is coming back, no one does. We must always be watching, waiting for His return. I don’t think that God is waiting for you to mess up and then come back just to punish you though. I think a lot of people have this vision of God as this Zeus type dude up in the clouds waiting to strike people down if they don’t say a prayer before every meal. That’s not at all who God is. God created each and everyone of us on purpose, for a purpose. God is our heavenly father. As a father myself, I only want what is best for my son. As Gods children, He only wants what’s best for us. My son gets upset when I tell him he can’t do something, but I only tell him no for his own good. The same is true for God. The reason He tells us not to do certain things is for our own good. When we decide to disobey God, it will always end in pain, suffering, misery, sadness, grief, and heartache. But just because we disobey God doesn’t mean we are banished into the pits of hell. His love is unconditional. When my son disobeys, he gets punished but I still love him. I don’t throw him out or disown him. I love him no matter what he has done. The same is true for our God, He loves you no matter what you have done. For those of you that may be reading this and don’t know God, or those of you that know Jesus but don’t have a relationship with Him, I would encourage you to open a bible and really get to know who Jesus is. Yes, He is the son of God, but He was also a person. A living man, just like you and me. I promise you, if you were to spend just ten minutes a day reading the gospels, your life would be drastically changed for the better. I honestly can’t think of a single person that has ever lived that would say their life got worse after spending time with God.