Plot Twist: Week 10 - Day 5

Opening Prayer:

God, I come to you today with an open and humble heart. Help me rest in your abundant grace. Amen.

 

Read: Luke 15:31, NIV

“My son,” the father said, “you are always with me, and everything I have is yours.”

 

Reflect:

Today’s scripture occurs while the father tries to get the older son to enter the celebration for his newly returned younger son. A feast of epic propositions is taking place and the older son is angry that the wild, younger son was accepted back so quickly. The father is saying that he wants him to join the feast because he cares for him and always has. In true Jesus fashion, he does something weird and leaves the story without a conclusion. We never find out if the older son entered the feast.

 I believe many churchgoers today still possess an elder son spirit - I know I absolutely do at times. It’s hard to watch the church continue to cater to the lost, changing things I enjoy in order to reach those who haven’t “put in the work” with God. But a growing kingdom, an ever-widening communion table, is the end goal - NOT my own comfort and enjoyment.

 When we slide into that selfish, superior attitude of the elder brother, we effectively keep the younger brother from God. Nothing pushes people away from church involvement quite like the superior air of an out-of-touch believer. If you don’t believe me, ask a non-believer to honestly give you their thoughts on Christians and the church.

 As the father in the story says, we are always with him and everything he has is ours. We don’t need to cling, tight fisted and angry, to the status quo. There is more than enough God to go around.

 

Apply:

Ask yourself this question - “What am I willing to give up so that others may gain?” This could mean focusing on reaching the lost instead of having your preferred style of worship. It could mean cutting your budget for dining out so that you can put more money into a local outreach that is dear to your heart. It is our privilege to make these sacrifices for Christ.

 

Closing Prayer:

Dear God, center my heart on your mission and help me love those around me well. Amen.

Terry Schneider