Wednesday, August 10, 2011

blessing the prodigal

it's a beautiful and hard things to care for others...to allow your heart to be like God's and open to relationship even when it means being hurt. this week my lovely cousin annette mentioned the story of the prodigal son (luke 15:11-32) as we talked about loving people, raising children, choices and condemnation.   she reminded me that when the son leaves he is blessed and when he returns he is blessed by the father. the same father who he essentially said f-off and die to by asking for his inheritance. if the father represents God in the story and the call is to be like God then what i now see in this parable is the idea of blessing when ever one choose to enter back into relationship and rejoicing that the wandering one has found home.

yet too often my response can look more like the older brother who has stayed...bitter and jaded because of "doing what's right" and feeling that the "rightness" deserves a special blessing. which doesn't come, in spite of the fact that he all which is there is under the older siblings command, and being mad that the one who "screwed up" is getting all that you have desired.

part of loving others is letting them like the prodigal son walk their own path...allowing them to go to the places where they will encounter their need for God (home) and choose to come back in whatever humble means they can because home is far better than where they are at. this is one of the hardest things to do in life...wait for those you love to hit rock bottom so to speak. this looks different for me than it does for my brother or my best friend. for some it means just touching their toe into the waters for others it means swimming while profusely bleeding in heavily shark infested waters, yet what i know beyond a shadow of a doubt is that everyone has the chance to get out of rock bottom but the catch is they must admit that they are there. it's like rehab or therapy , it only works when you are willing and commit to being honest with your self and others who are walking with you.  also having lived and been around a several people suffering from addictions what doesn't work is condemning and shaming someone who is an addict they are all ready have bucket loads of this in themselves they don't need it from others. love with boundaries are good for you and as a byproduct that person....support is good too.

as i think about the story of the prodigal son...it gives me great hope...this God that i believe and trust my life to is one who desperately desires to embrace and bless all the prodigal children...all of creation which is God's good, very good creation...the restoration of the whole of creation as prodigal children of the first and truest Creator is the hope of life!

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