Imagine being the younger son in Luke 15, rehearsing your speech and making the final turn to approach the house. You’re not sure if you will be accepted. Then you see him. Running to meet you. It’s your dad! You’re running through the speech one more time in your head. You are practiced, you are ready, but as the words leave your mouth you hear him say, “kill the fatted calf, we are going to have a feast tonight. My son who was dead is now alive. He is home.”
You’re accepted. You are welcomed. You enter the party with full confidence that you have your father’s unmerited favor. ..
Then imaging the older brother in Luke 15. (Remember, this story is about two brothers.) You’ve been loyal, you work the farm, you do what you are told and never once has your old man thrown a party for you. When you come home you are furious to find that your brother is home and the old man has thrown him a party. You feel slighted somehow. You feel edged out. Somehow the fact that your father would accept your stupid younger brother makes you angry. You don’t enter the party. The father has to come out to invite you in… in the end we are left wondering if you will ever go in?
This is the scandal of Amazing Grace that God would love sinners who repent and find their way home. Sometimes we think that people need to suffer a little because of where they have been and the choices they have made. But that’s not the way God welcomes sinners. The road to repentance is an open road that he looks down, waiting and expecting.
FATHER, thank you for the scandal of Amazing Grace. Thank you that you welcome repentant sinners. I rejoice with those who have trusted in you as Lord and Savior. I lift up those who have wandered far from home and are living in the far country. I pray for the salvation of friends and family. I pray for repentance that leads to rejoicing. IN JESUS NAME, AMEN.
What did you take away from today’s reading? What are your thoughts or questions? Feel free to comment below and enter the discussion.