Coming Home Is Always Shorter

This past Sunday I sat and listened to Kerry give her testimony… her “Love Story” as she called it. I had never heard the story of the Prodigal Son that way before. It still is affecting me almost a week later.

We often focus on how ‘far’ we have moved away from God rather than how ‘close’ we are able to come back. We forget that He is waiting for us to return back to Him and then starts running to ‘meet us’. HE is the one who shortens the journey back to Him.

At least that’s how I see it,

 

C

PS – We launched a new series for our YouTube Channel called “McK and Mike” and we continued the conversation from Sunday. If you want to hear Kerry’s message you can click on this link right here. Enjoy.

 

 

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DON’T TOUCH MY STUFF!!!!!!

don't touch cat

‘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 15:22-24 NIV)

We all seem to love a great story where someone who used to profess to be a Christian comes back to church, turns their life around and gets their relationship with God back on track. Those are easy to cheer and applaud. We love these events because we get to see the redeeming Love of God in action right in front of our eyes; His Grace Unfolding.

But at what expense are we willing to participate in this Parade of Pardon? How much are ‘we’ willing to put on the line so that we get to watch the Mercy of God embrace those who were / are hurting, broken, and empty?

I ask that because when we look at this analogy that Jesus used (also called a parable), the father had two sons and divided the inheritance between them (to which the one son squandered it all away)… So you guessed it; all of the stuff the father used to celebrate the son’s homecoming… came from the other son’s inheritance! That was ‘his’ stuff!!!

The moment we think that what God has given us is for our sole benefit, we’ve lost the point of blessing. Inheritances are not earned, they are given. All that we inherit from the Father is not so that our lives can be now cushy and awesome, but that rather we have the resources available so that when the sons and daughters come back in distress to the Father we are ready and able to lead them back into a family who cares, accepts, and loves them.

The other son missed out on the party because he was having his own party… a pity party. May we always be out in the fields working our ‘inheritance’ with one eye on the work needing to still be done and the other scanning for the Father’s signal for us to come celebrate that another child has finally come Home.

At least that’s how I see it,

Craig

Grace That Is More Equal

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I don’t think this is going to be a long rant. I guess I’m just writing this as an addendum from yesterday’s message at Evangel entitled “The Level Playing Field” from our ‘Feltboard Chronicles’ series looking at the parables of Jesus.

Someone wrote on social media in response to my message their thoughts about what I had to say about Matthew 20:1-16; where the owner of the vineyard went out throughout the day getting workers to bring in the harvest. By the end of the day, some workers had only worked one hour but he still paid them the full day’s wage (which was more than generous for a FULL day’s work… you’ll have to listen to the message to get the whole backstory on that).

The point that I was making (and I believe Jesus was making too) was that even though WE seem to place a pecking order on people’s worth (including ourselves) that God does not. Grace is only able to be given to those who do not deserve it… which includes ALL of us.

Well a friend of that person posted that they wondered if I had read Karl Marx’s Communist Manifesto. At first I was surprised. Then a little humoured. Then a little confused. Now I’ve settled down to a disappointed sadness.

Sad, not because my feelings are hurt… but because they probably represent so many people who miss out on the beauty of God’s grace.

You see, I firmly believe that there is no one too bad to receive God’s grace. That said, I also believe that there are a lot of people who unfortunately think that they are too GOOD to receive it too. “Oh, I don’t need God.” “I’ve got my life under control.” “Fill in the blank excuse……”

Titus 2:11 says, “God’s readiness to give and forgive is now public. Salvation’s available for everyone! (The Message)” It’s common access to an uncommon grace.

Communism says that we are all equal. Thankfully, Grace instead says that we are equally positioned in a relationship that none of us deserve.

At least that’s how I see it,

 

 

C