THURSDAY, DECEMBER 16
“So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him.”
Luke 15:20 (NLT)
EVERLASTING FATHER – HE IS FORGIVING
At the funeral of former US First Lady Betty Ford, her son Steven said, “She was the one with the love and the comfort, and she was the first one there to put her arms around you. Nineteen years ago when I went through my alcoholism, my mother . . . gave me one of the greatest gifts, and that was how to surrender to God, and to accept the grace of God in my life. And truly in her arms I felt like the prodigal son coming home, and I felt God’s love through her. And that was a good gift.” Steven Ford concluded his tribute with the words, “Thank you, Mom, for loving us, loving your husband, loving us kids, loving the nation, with the heart of God.”
Steven Ford could identify with the prodigal son who experienced the forgiveness of his father who represented God’s forgiveness of His children. In Luke 15 the father saw his wayward but repentant son “a long way off.” We know this was not an accidental sighting. Clearly his father had been keeping a hopeful vigil, watching and waiting (praying) for such a return.
This story shows that no matter how low you may have sunk into sin, there is hope if you will turn from your sin to God. If you say, “No, I’m too far gone,” you are only making excuses and you’re not believing the invitation that God extends to every guilty sinner. If you are living a life of sin, Jesus is saying to you, “No matter how awful, defiant, and wretched your sin, if you will come to the Father in true repentance, He will welcome you.”
Praise God for the complete forgiveness He offers you. Thank Him for the gift of reconciliation. Ask God to help you forgive and reconcile any relationships that need to be restored.