“But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.” Luke 15:20
The story of the Prodigal Son was preached to us last week. I think it is so easy to turn off your hearing when you are being spoken to on any subject that you think you know something about. I did that a lot to my parents growing up, but I have learned to at least try and hear what is being said because what a person might be telling me may just well be different this time. Such is the case with this sermon.
We generally focus on the son that went away, squandered his father’s money, lived in squalor and came home again broken and seeking forgiveness. I think the more important part of this story isn’t about the Prodigal Son but about the Father. The Father came out to the son long before he had made it home. I think that’s the role of God. I think he reaches us long before we’ve made it home. I think he reaches us long before we’ve made it home every single time we go away and squander his money and live in squalor because let’s face it, we do it over and over and over again.
I also learned that there are two prodigal sons in this story. The son who stayed home committed sin as well. His jealousy and anger, his self-righteousness, was just as sinful as his brother’s sins. We are all prodigal sons. We all fit in one of two categories or both. In some way we all stray from our Father and he will see us and greet us long before we make it home to him.