Many people easily summarize their evaluation of the Prodigal Son as a selfish and an ardent waster of precious resources. They hardly consider his positive side of how he came out of the valley of life. They never take into consideration the way he crawled out of the valley and took every right step in right direction to ensure that he was restored to his rightful position in the family. The wonderful comeback approach of the Prodigal Son is the topic of our consideration this day and the way we can apply the approach to our lives to turn around the ugly situations in our lives to benefit us.
We all know that ‘change’ is one of the most difficult things to effect among humanity. Every human being may at a certain point in life cultivate a certain negative habit. The habit might not initially be harmful to himself or anyone at the beginning. It may gradually evolve in the life of the individual and may later become a permanent and problematic habit. A chain smoker began the life of smoking with a stick of cigarette. An alcoholic started the life of alcoholism with a tiny little glass of alcohol. An extra minute of sleeping every day graduates to a life of laziness. It could take a long time to build up a certain habit but it always takes a strong, thoughtful and determined mind to make a U-turn from the pathway of destruction to a good life. Only few possess the ability and tenacity to crawl out of the overwhelming miry clay of life.
In the story of the Prodigal Son, you will notice that poverty was not the reason for his problem; the reckless choices that he made was the problem. Yes, the Prodigal Son got the inheritance he wanted from his father; but the habit of recklessness he had cultivated over so many years led him to the bottom of life where he was struggling to subsist on the dirty swine’s menu in a strange land. People would say that he had become plummeted in the valley life. But that was not the end of the story of the Prodigal Son’s life. There was still one beautiful attribute of thoughtfulness left in him. This beautiful attribute began to wake up other good attributes in him.
In the thoughtfulness of the Prodigal Son, he remembered the abundance he was enjoying when he was with his father. He thought about the hired men working in his father’s business. He thought that his life could be better than what he had subjected himself to. “But when he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have more than enough bread, but I am dying here with hunger! (Luke 15:17) Perhaps the intimidation of shame tried to suppress this thought. However the thought continue to reverberate in his mind until he finally yielded in humility.
One day, determination prevailed. He said in his mind that he was not going to perish in his abject poverty where he was competing with swine to subsist on its dirty food. He determined to put the right foot forward by acknowledging his sinful error of departing from his father. “I will get up and go to my father, and will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in your sight; I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me as one of your hired men.” (Luke 15:18-19) One of the common law maxim of equity states that, “He who comes into equity must come with clean hands” The word of God that had been established before the maxim stated in Psalm 24:3-4, “Who shall ascend into the hill of the LORD? or who shall stand in his holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.”
The Prodigal Son made a move. “So he got up and came to his father.” (Luke 15:20) He carefully wrapped his determination of repentance in a beautiful package of humility and prayerfully presented it to his father with utmost faith that his father will not reject his plea. Of course, the execution of the presentation was excellent. The remorseful was evident in his sincere countenance. No wonder a brilliant result followed. Any thoughtful individual who can humbly acknowledge his sinfulness, repent of his sins and seek the face of the Heavenly Father in reconciliation and forgiveness would expect that the execution of the faithful brilliant thoughtfulness will not be in vain. The scripture says, “He shall receive the blessing from the LORD, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.” (Psalm 24:5) The precept of sowing and reaping will surely take effect. As he had chosen to sow into the Spirit, certainly, he will not reap corruption. “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.” (Galatians 6:7-8)
Perhaps you find yourself in the bottomless pit of sin like the Prodigal Son. Or perhaps you find yourself competing with pigs of worldliness and subsisting in their dirty and sinful lifestyle. You can still make a U-turn and reconcile with the Heavenly Father. The word of God says, “In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also” (John 14:2-3) Let that precious promise of a mansion in heaven and powerful thoughtfulness of the love of our Heavenly Father resuscitate your spirit. With a strong determination come out of the valley of life, take the step of faith and come to the Father with clean hands in a repentant spirit. Humbly present your plea with a contrite heart. “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.” (Psalm 51:17) The Lord will not reject you. His hands of mercy will enfold you. “It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassion fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.” (Lamentation 3:22-23) By His compassion and mercy, you will be clothed with garment of righteousness and be reestablished and restored in His bosom as His sons and daughters. You can still change and make it to His presence. Come today and find out what He has in store for you.
Prayer: Oh Lord God Almighty, have mercy on me. As I humbly approach You this day, forgive me of all my sinful life. Deliver me from my self-destructive sinful lifestyle. Let the precious blood that you shed on the Cross of Calvary atone for my sins and restore me onto Yourself as a beloved son in your presence, in Jesus name, Amen.