Wednesday, April 1, 2009



Have you ever made a choice in life that you thought was a great decision when you made it, just to have it blow up in your face? Those are the times when we realize, we should have taken the time to analyze that decision before we went full steam ahead, without considering the consequences of our choices. Well, this story that Jesus talks about in the book of Luke is also about a young son that made a choice in life that later he would have to admit to himself and to his father that he had made the wrong choice.

In the book of Luke, Jesus tells us about “ The Parable Of The Lost Son”.

Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons. The younger one said to his father, Father, give me my share of the estate. So he divided his property between them. Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in the whole country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed the pigs. He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything. When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men. So he got up and went to his father." (Luke 15:11-20)

Note: How many times we must have thought to ourselves, “The grass must be greener on the other side”. Somehow we thought we’re not getting what we wanted or what we thought we deserved and we make foolish decision under this false pretence. This young man had it made at his father’s house and he didn’t even know it. We sometimes don’t see or recognize how good we have it, until it is gone. We all make mistakes, not one of us are perfect but when we do something wrong we should not be too proud to say “ I was wrong, I made a mistake, I’m sorry, Forgive me.

When we disobey the Lord and we ignore His guidance for our life, we are also making a bad decision, a huge mistake! Only in obeying the Lord do we have joy, peace, unconditional love, purpose, and fulfillment in life. Success for our future… “You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out” (Deuteronomy 28:6). We cannot continue to live this rebellious lifestyle against God and not have His hand against us (1 Samuel 12:15). This is when we have to heed what the Apostle Paul tells the Galatians: "Do not be deceived: GOD CANNOT BE MOCKED. A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature WILL REAP DESTRUCTION; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit WILL REAP ETERNAL LIFE." (Galatians 6:7-8)

In this Parable, the young son goes back to his father and this is what happened:

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. The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son. But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to  celebrate." (Luke 15:20-24). Just like this young man’s father had compassion for his son so will GOD have compassion on all who will come to Him with a repentant heart.

Note: Going our own way, doing our own thing, never works. We don’t know what’s best for us. No matter how smart we think we are, without God’s guidance in our lives we will all fall flat on our faces. Life is hard enough as it is and we are making it even harder for ourselves by going against the only One that can help us and save us from our problems, GOD. This was a lesson that the prodigal son had to learn. The very person he had to return to for help was the very same person he turned from and hurt the most, his father.

This is what God is saying to us from the book of Jeremiah: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. (Watch this …don’t miss it) You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the Lord (Jeremiah 29:11-14). It’s never too late to tell God I was wrong, I made a mistake, I’m sorry, forgive me. Some people like to see others fall flat on their faces so they could laugh at them or say, “ That’s what you get for not listening” but this is not how God is. God is waiting with open arms for you to return to Him… He can’t wait for that wonderful reunion between you and Him. Words cannot express how much He loves you, how much you mean to HIM.

Note: GOD is not a God of rules, as some may think. This is not a legalistic teaching; it is about a Holy GOD who expects his followers to mimic the life of His Son (Jesus Christ) here on earth. Jesus says: "Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me." (John 14:21). Actions speak louder than words!

When a person is filled with the love of God, Filled with the Holy Spirit… they will love their neighbor as themselves (Romans 13: 8-10). They will not repay evil with evil or insult with insult but instead they will bless (1 Peter 3:9). They will love and pray for their enemies (Matthew 5:44). They will forgive others who have offended them just like their heavenly Father forgives them (Matthew 6:14-15). They will treat people the way they themselves would like to be treated (Matthew 7:12). They will know that they’ve been saved by grace and not by works (Ephesians 2:8-9), and they will definitely know that this doesn’t mean… “ Hooray! I been saved by grace, so, now I can live like hell and still go to heaven” No! The Bible says: “Live as free men, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as servants of God." (1 Peter 2:16)

Let me give you another scripture concerning the way all Christians should conduct themselves while living here on earth. This scripture is found in the book of 1 John and it reads like this: We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. The man who says, “ I know Him,” but does not do what He commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But if anyone obeys His word, God’s love is truly made complete in him. (Watch this…don’t miss it) This is how we know we are in Him: Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did." (1 John 2:3-6)

Everything about us should let the world know that we are “A New Creation”, our lives should be a walking mirror of the living Christ living inside of us. The things that God tells us to do are not burdensome or too hard to carry out; it’s only a matter of choice. Whose choice? Our choice!  “The world and its desires pass away; BUT the MAN who DOES the WILL of GOD lives FOREVER.” (1 John 2:17)

Note: God just wants His followers to do right, live right. Love God, Love people… What’s so wrong or hard about that? It’s only hard because we are not willing to live this kind of life. So we use every excuse possible not to follow and obey the Lord. We blame God, family, friends, circumstances, is always somebody else’s fault… We never look in the mirror and say, “ It’s me”. I’m the problem, I admit it, I just don’t want to live this kind of life; I do not want to serve and obey God, sin is a lot more fun and attractive to me right now… “BUT men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil." (John 3:19). It’s never too late to take a new direction in life; it’s never too late to do the right thing. If you have reached the point in life when you say, "I HAD ENOUGH?" and you're ready for a change in your life then Jesus is the ONE to call upon. Nothing in this world last forever, but what you do for the Lord Jesus Christ will! You have to make a decision; do I follow God or the world? The choice is yours.

If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)