Robes and Rings or Pigs in Pens
I will get up and go to my father, and will tell him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in your sight. I am no more worthy to be called your son. Make me as one of your hired servants.' He arose, and came to his father. But while he was still far off, his father saw him, and was moved with compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. Luke 15:18 WEB
The younger son in the story that Jesus told had really messed up his life and ran through all of his inheritance in wild living and prostitutes. When it all was gone, a famine set in and those that may have helped him get by, were no longer able to.
When he was starving, he got a job feeding pigs, which would have been repulsive to a Jew. Pigs (swine) were considered unclean under mosaic law. After growing up on a farm, I can confirm that. There is nothing quite like the smell of a hog pen, and they love to wallow in the mud.
While starving and living in a disgusting place, he came to his senses. Hardship has an amazing way of bringing us back to reality. He remembered that His father's hired servants had food to spare and he decided to humble himself and go back home. When he lived with the father, he lived in royalty. When he lived on his own, he lived in poverty.
He put together a repentance speech: 'Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in your sight. I am no more worthy to be called your son. Make me as one of your hired servants' (Luke 15:18). Then he went to meet his father, broke, barefoot, and hungry.
His father saw him coming up the road, was moved with compassion, and ran to his son, hugging and kissing him. While the son was trying to explain how sorry and unworthy that he was, the father was already commanding the others to bring the best robe and put it on him, a ring on his finger, and shoes on his feet. He threw a great feast and celebrated having his son back home safe and sound. The father was happy to have his son back with him.
Sometimes we stumble and feel like we are no longer worthy to talk to God. We feel that we have let Him down, once again. Then the enemy climbs on our back and rides us around like a pony, telling us how sorry that we are, and sometimes he is right. We did it and there is no one to blame but us. We knew that it was wrong, but did it anyway.
Yet no matter what we have done in the past, we can humbly turn back to God and He will begin to restore us. He is not mad, but so happy to see us walking on His road. Too often we go about with our head down, having no idea who we really are in Christ, or what we mean to Him. We are bound by our past and living exactly as the enemy wants us, defeated and broken, when it could be corrected in seconds.
If you ever find yourself broken, hungry, living in a disgusting place and it was completely your fault, remember that God's door is still open, and that He wants you back. He promises us that He who believes in Jesus will never be put to shame. Shake that defeated mentality off and lift your head for you are a Child of the King and you are always welcome in God's house. Prayer: Heavenly Father I thank You for accepting me just as I am. Restore me Lord and help me find my proper place in the body. Help me to know who I am in You. Restore my identity as Your child and lead me from this day forth, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray.
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