You may have heard the prodigal son story in the Bible; a young man demands his inheritance from his Father who is still alive, awkward. The Father grants his son’s request knowing what was coming but realizes his wayward son would not receive or listen to wise counsel at that time.
The deceived young man sets out on his own, travels to a foreign land and begins to squander his inheritance with riotous living and a party lifestyle. At first, he has plenty of friends, until the money runs out. His supposed friends are now nowhere to be found. The freedom he thought he had, quickly turned to bondage, poverty, and loneliness.
Scrambling to survive, he desperately looks for some kind of work that would at least sustain him with basic necessities. He finds himself working at a hog farm slopping pigs just to survive. His hunger is so bad that even the pigs’ food begins to look good to him.
The Bible says in Luke 15 that one day while murking around with the pigs, the father’s estranged son came to his right mind. Suddenly, the deception was gone and he begins to think with clarity and wisdom. He decides to return home to His Father, not expecting to be restored to sonship status but rather as a hired servant.
He thought, surely my Father won’t receive me as a son after my betrayal, but maybe he will have mercy on me and hire me so at least I’ll have food and a roof over my head.
As he approached his father’s house, his father saw him coming, dropped everything and ran towards his son. He embraced him with hugs, kisses, and compassion. The son was no doubt taken back by his father’s warm greeting but begins to give a rehearsed speech… just take me back as a servant, I’ve sinned and I’m no longer worthy to be your son anymore.
His Father would hear none of it. Without a word of rebuke, he restored his son to sonship by putting on a feast of celebration and clothed him with a robe of restoration. He declared for all to hear, “My lost son has been found…he is alive again!”
What a beautiful picture of our Heavenly Father’s heart for those who have taken the wrong path. If that’s you, He will not condemn you or turn you away. If you feel like a prodigal son or daughter today, simply return home to His love and grace. Humble yourself and call out to Him. He will abundantly forgive and receive you back to His household.