When scripture comes alive in your life it always drives the point home. When I had children I learned to appreciate the “heart of the father”. As my children grew I learned to appreciate the lessons on discipline, obedience and freedom of choice.
We recently had lessons on the prodigal son. Not only in our emotions as parents but in watching our children react to the situation. We have been blessed with obedient, loving children that have never spoken against us. When their youngest sibling went astray they had some new emotions. “All of your emotional energy is going to him.” “Why would you give him a big dinner when he comes home?” “I’m not going to mow the yard, that’s his job.” They haven’t done anything wrong and yet they feel slighted by the one taking all the energy.
I wanted to say: “But you don’t need my energy – you’re ok”. “I want to throw a party because we are happy that he’s home”. “You should mow the yard for him. It’s his first day home”. These aren’t punishments for being obedient – they are a celebration for his return.
We speak of love and compassion in the church but do we really want the lost to be forgiven? Do we really want drug addicts, criminals, and prodigals coming to church? Are we ready to press in and see them healed?
Luke 15:31 “‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. 32 But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’”