This week in my internship at the house of prayer that I go to, we talked about meditating on the Word of God. It was probably the best message so far this semester. So today I just want to share some of my notes on that. In my Bible class at school for bellwork we are to go to the assigned verse and write a short paragraph or so about it, answering these questions:
- What does this verse say about God?
- What does this verse say about me?
- What am I to know, do, change, or apply?
- What will I do with it?
During worship at my internship we were practicing meditation on Luke 15:11-32. This story is called The Parable of the Prodigal Son but the thing I love is that my youth leader calls it The Loving Father. As I was reading through it, I asked God to show me His thoughts on the story and I answered three of the previous four questions.
What Do These Verses Say About God?
God is a loving Father, and I know that He longs to have a relationship with me but He doesn’t demand or force it upon me – if He did that, it wouldn’t truly be love, it would just be lame and dreadful. God is filled with compassion for His loved ones. (Compassion ~ sympathetic pity and concern for the sufferings or misfortunes of others.) I know that God doesn’t enjoy it when we aren’t safe in His arms, but when we are, He hugs and kisses us to show us His gentle, fatherly love. He celebrates over us when we return or come to Him. (Celebrate ~ to publicly acknowledge a significant or happy day or event with a social gathering or enjoyable activity.)
When I read this story, I often wonder about the older son, and at times I can relate to him too. In verse 29 he says to his dad, “Look! All these years I’ve been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends.” I feel like this a lot, like nobody notices or rewards the person who is constantly doing the right thing. But that in itself brings reward which is a peaceful life of favor because you are an obedient child of God. Yet the Father replies gently and lovingly with, “Child, you are always with me and everything I have is yours.”
God is our generous dad who shares all He has with us. He’s eager for our return and is confident in the knowledge that he knows His children will come home. (Confidence ~ self- assured, firm trust; the feeling or belief that one can rely on someone or something.) He knows us so well, He even knows the distinct way we walk and can recognize us from far away. He knows our heart, he sees our repentant hearts when we are repentant. “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” Romans 8:1
What Do These Verses Say About Me?
That no matter what I do, God my Father loves me and He gets excited when I choose Him over the at-first-appealing-but-actually-crappy-worldly-life. God celebrates when I’m alive after being dead and when I’m found after being lost. (verse 32)
What Am I To Know, Do, Change, or Apply?
I feel like I need to stop trying to live up to being a perfect Christian. I will screw up and this doesn’t give me an excuse to be a turd on purpose but I am to know that mistakes are okay and my Heavenly Dad still loves me no matter what.
What are your thoughts on this Bible story? Do you have a different perspective? Comment your thoughts below!