We all know the story of the Prodigal Son. When you hear it, who do you compare yourself to? Are you the forgiving father, the sinful son, or the jealous brother? Or maybe you’re the mother we don’t hear about praying that her son will come home. If we’re honest, we could be any one of them, depending on the day. If we have children, we know what it’s like for a child to hurt us by his or her actions. Sometimes this can be very serious. There are parents who have children in prison. It takes a lot of courage and forgiveness to visit them and make sure they still know of a parent’s love. At other times a child turns his or her back on the parent’s beliefs. How do we react? There are times when we are the prodigal who turned their back on their parent, rejecting their values, getting involved in drugs or worse. Do we have the courage of the prodigal in this parable to admit that we are wrong and return home admitting our failures and begging our parent for forgiveness? And maybe we’re the jealous brother or sister who doesn’t understand how the father or mother can forgive this brother again and again. Most likely, if you are a parent, you pray every day that God will protect this child of yours and bring them back unharmed.
God is truly a “prodigal” Father Whose Love is poured out to us in immeasurable ways. When we have lost our way, God is ready with open arms welcoming us back with open arms as the precious son or daughter He Loves.
And we pray:
Search my heart I pray and identify in me any form of self-righteousness or pride that needs to be rooted out. Thank You that in Christ I have already been declared righteous and accepted in the Beloved. But I pray that I may walk in spirit and truth and keep my self-life in the place of death so that the new life of Christ, which I received at salvation may grow in grace and mature in the faith. This I ask in Jesus’ name, AMEN.