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Monday, December 12, 2011

Families, Prodigals and Turkeys [1]

The holiday season is upon us. Thanksgiving has come and gone, and Christmas and New Year are right around the proverbial corner. This usually means partys, overeating, and most of us will usually think of family. This tends to be true whether we live near them or will spend time with them or not.

Families and holidays. I often think, "Could the Lord have made a worse combination?" Now, I don’t know about your family, but mine doesn’t always have it all together, but that makes them interesting, usually fun and sometimes downright bizarre.

Most of us worry that our families are a bit dysfunctional. Well, I've got news for you- they all are to some degree. Yours, mine, the girl with the perfect hair in High School, that lovely family down the street. All our families have some-thing or some-one that doesn't seem quite "right."

In this section of Luke, Jesus give a series of 3 parables, that look at things lost and things found. He is actually speaking about the character of God, but I am going to spend a little time on the “Parable of the Prodigal Son.”

In this tiny story, Jesus communicates a number of lessons. And we can each find our own place somewhere in this story. You may even recognize yourself at different points in your life.

So, let’s get to it:

Our Text: Luke 15:25-15:32

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 that 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 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.

But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he 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 15:11-24)


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