A Lost Son Returns Home
September 12 - Nº 255 Luke 15:11-32
Jesus told another story. This one was about a father and his two sons. One day the younger son came to his father and said, “I want my share of the inheritance now.” When the father gave in, the younger son gathered what was his and left. He traveled to another country and spent his inheritance on wild parties. Suddenly a severe famine hit the land, and he was left with nowhere to live and nothing to eat. Eventually he found a job feeding pigs. He was so hungry that he was tempted to eat the slop he fed them. Finally, the young man came to his senses. He said, “I am about to starve to death. Yet I know the servants who work for my father have more than enough food to eat. I will humble myself and go home.” He practiced what he would say when he arrived: “I have sinned against heaven and against you. I know I am not worthy to be called your son, so please hire me as one of your servants.” The son headed home. When he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with compassion, he ran to greet his son. He threw his arms around his neck and kissed him. The son started to share the speech he had prepared. He said, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I know I am not worthy to be called your son . . .” But before he could get any further, the father interrupted. He hollered to the servants, “Quick, go get the best robe we have and put it on my son. Put a ring on his finger and some sandals on his feet.” He sent other servants to prepare the choicest calf for dinner. “We are going to celebrate,” he explained. “This son of mine was dead, but now he is alive; he was lost, but now he is found.” So, everyone prepared for a big feast. Meanwhile, the older son was working in the fields. As he headed home one evening, he heard the sounds of music and dancing. He asked one of the servants, “What’s going on?” The servant excitedly explained, “It’s your brother! He has come home, and your father has prepared a feast.” This made the older brother angry. Stubbornly, he refused to go inside the house. So, his father came out to him. He pleaded for his son to join them, but the older brother refused. “All these years I have been faithful to you and done everything you asked me to do. But not one time did you kill even a small goat to honor me!” he stormed. “But now, this son of yours, who wasted your property on parties and prostitutes, has come home and you are rewarding him with a big celebration!” The father looked at him lovingly. “Oh, my son,” he said, “You have always been with me, and everything I have is yours. But we need to celebrate and be glad because your younger brother was dead—but now he is alive! He was lost—but now he is found!” The story ends with the older son standing outside. The conclusion would be up to the Pharisees. Would they ever choose to go inside? They were just like the older son who let his busy-ness get in the way of his relationship with his father. They resented that Jesus loved the tax gatherers and sinners as much as he loved them. But they still had a chance to accept the Father’s love. The decision was up to them.
Have you ever strayed away from God? Sometimes our stubborn pride distances us from His love just as much as blatant sin does. God is our Father. He wants to embrace us and bless us. It’s our choice whether we accept what He offers.