I am reading ” Captured by Grace” by Dr. David Jeremiah. In the chapter titled ” The Converting Power of Grace” he speaks about the Prodigal Son and how we each see ourselves in this powerful story of love and forgiveness. Do we see ourself as the son or the father? I have seen myself as both. Carefree,young and naive as well as wiser and older! ( Note that I am still carefree-maybe not as much-but it is still there! Cort says I am a free spirit and he is a nerd. haha.) The son needed much grace and the father was able to give it. Just as I have also needed much grace and my Father has given it. He is true to His Word- “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
This is an excerpt from the book:
” No one can help but see himself in the narrative. ( of the prodigal son.) The painter Rembrandt was transfixed by the picture he found painted in the words of Luke 15. Early in his career , the artist was known to be an arrogant and pleasure driven young man, and he painted himself into his version as the wandering son from the story, found in the shame of an Amsterdam brothel. Then, at the very end of his life, a wiser man, but ailing one, Rembrandt returned to the story again, this time painting himself into the parable as the loving father, embracing his child. Light emanates from the tender face of the father in a scene of raw emotional power.
The resulting masterpiece, ” The Return of the Prodigal” reached through the centuries to change the life of the Christian writer, Henri Nouwen, who spent days silently meditating upon the spiritual resonance of the scene. As a result, Father Nouwen wrote a masterpiece of his own, a book namedafter the painting: The Return of the Prodigal. Nouwen observes in his book that early in life, Rembrandt had responded, like many people, to the story of the son. As an older, wiser man, he sees the story in a new light. It has become for him a story not of the son who sins, BUT OF THE FATHER WHO FORGIVES.”
11Jesus also told them another story:
Once a man had two sons. 12The younger son said to his father, “Give me my share of the property.” So the father divided his property between his two sons.
13Not long after that, the younger son packed up everything he owned and left for a foreign country, where he wasted all his money in wild living. 14He had spent everything, when a bad famine spread through that whole land. Soon he had nothing to eat.
15He went to work for a man in that country, and the man sent him out to take care of his pigs. [b] 16He would have been glad to eat what the pigs were eating, [c] but no one gave him a thing. 17Finally, he came to his senses and said, “My father’s workers have plenty to eat, and here I am, starving to death! 18I will go to my father and say to him, `Father, I have sinned against God in heaven and against you. 19I am no longer good enough to be called your son. Treat me like one of your workers.’ ”
20The younger son got up and started back to his father. But when he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt sorry for him. He ran to his son and hugged and kissed him.
21The son said, “Father, I have sinned against God in heaven and against you. I am no longer good enough to be called your son.”
22But his father said to the servants, “Hurry and bring the best clothes and put them on him. Give him a ring for his finger and sandals [d] for his feet. 23Get the best calf and prepare it, so we can eat and celebrate. 24This son of mine was dead, but has now come back to life. He was lost and has now been found.” And they began to celebrate. 25The older son had been out in the field. But when he came near the house, he heard the music and dancing. 26So he called one of the servants over and asked, “What’s going on here?”
27The servant answered, “Your brother has come home safe and sound, and your father ordered us to kill the best calf.” 28The older brother got so angry that he would not even go into the house.
His father came out and begged him to go in. 29But he said to his father, “For years I have worked for you like a slave and have always obeyed you. But you have never even given me a little goat, so that I could give a dinner for my friends. 30This other son of yours wasted your money on prostitutes. And now that he has come home, you ordered the best calf to be killed for a feast.”
31His father replied, “My son, you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. 32But we should be glad and celebrate! Your brother was dead, but he is now alive. He was lost and has now been found.”
Let us be glad and celebrate!
Thank you Lord!