The Gift …

“When he was still a long way off, his father saw him. His heart pounding, he ran out, embraced him, and kissed him. The son started his speech: ‘Father, I’ve sinned against God, I’ve sinned before you; I don’t deserve to be called your son ever again.'”. Luke 15:20-21 The Message

Only God really knows that point in your life where you hit bottom .. wake up .. and begin to trust in someone other than yourself. You can wear your faith on the outside for years. You can keep all the rules and follow the straight lines and end up just as miserable as if you had wasted everything. Jesus told a story about two sons and a father. One son was destructively self-centered. The other son was deceptively self-centered. As an old Montana pastor writes: Jesus had to shatter both categories to save both lost lives and both dead-end life paths. One viewed life with unlimited sights and adventure. The other viewed life with security. Both ended up alone and shattered. One brother walked home. The other walked away from home. One blamed himself for his own misery. One blamed the other as his misery’s source. But God .. the Father .. offered the gift to both sons. The squanderer is wrapped up in grace .. acceptance .. and celebration. The rule-keeper is invited to “break” rules and celebrate. Both sons .. just like you are offered “the gift” of forgiveness .. restoration .. and new life in the road-running .. rule-busting Son. And even with New Life you need the regular .. heart-wrapping embrace of your Father’s love. Forgiveness becomes fragile and freedom becomes foreign without the Father’s presence. It’s the gift that Jesus offers those who return and those who release. You can find God in pig-pens and bottom-lines but you won’t stay there for long. He’s got a life for you to live today and it’s a gift. You won’t feel worthy but you’ll know what you’re worth! You’re worth the grace-gripping love of Christ precisely because you you’re unworthy. And you’re worth the grace-gripping love of Christ precisely because “never giving a moment a grief” never made you feel loved or truly free. It only takes a moment …

“The older brother stalked off in an angry sulk and refused to join in. His father came out and tried to talk to him, but he wouldn’t listen. The son said, ‘Look how many years I’ve stayed here serving you, never giving you one moment of grief, but have you ever thrown a party for me and my friends? Then this son of yours who has thrown away your money on whores shows up and you go all out with a feast!”

Ken Chester: Grace-Gripped is sent M-F to Road-Worn and Rule-Hardened Sons and Daughters welcomed home in Christ! (ken@priorityone.org)

About Ken Chester

I love seeing Christ become alive and real in someone's life. It is amazing what happens when Jesus moves in and starts to renovate a life. When I'm not riding my road bike, I am usually walking our corgi named Trinity (she came that way) and corgi-lab named Lowrider. Carolyn and I are transforming our backyard. And a book is on the way. ...Stay tuned ... Ken
This entry was posted in forgiveness, found, grace, life-changing, love of God, Luke, rescued, restoration, Son, surrender. Bookmark the permalink.

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