“When he came to his senses…” Luke 15:17
The young son/daughter was used to living impetuously. Everything on the spur of the moment. He/she did and said anything that came to mind without thinking. This works sometimes, but more often than not, it doesn’t. What you are actually doing is digging a hole for yourself and pretty soon it is almost impossible to climb out. Therefore, you think that you need to get away to a place where there are no constraints.
You pack all your things, take whatever money you may have and head out to a far country. Things look good for a while. You feel free. You are happy. You make many friends. For a while you can actually see what God’s creation looks like—then the need to be accepted and loved overtakes you. You have found it in your new place of employment, but that doesn’t seem to be enough. You found it in the place you are living, but still, it isn’t enough. Pretty soon you are craving more and more. It becomes an insatiable appetite.
The Prodigal Son, in the “Parable of the Lost Son,” found in Luke 15:11-31, is a teaching about the living of an unrighteous life. The fact is, this young man had to take himself with him along with his money and possessions. “Himself” is the one thing he neglected to pay attention to. Whatever he was unhappy about at home, he eventually became unhappy about out on his own. There was no peace inside him because he had not made peace with God.
I have heard someone say, “All I want is peace.” That person may never find it. At least, not until they look inside themselves and fill that gaping hole with the love and presence of Jesus Christ. His love is so great that, when you realize it, you will be able to climb out of the valley you have created for yourself and stand upon the rock atop the mountain.
I think the most important words in “The Parable of the Lost Son” is: “When he came to his senses,” (Holman Bible Luke 15:17) or “When he came to himself,” (NRSV Luke 15:17). You see, he didn’t go home because he was hungry and ran out of resources—although this was the impetus—but he went home because he came to the awareness that he was wrong and from deep within came an urge for a new beginning. He needed to tell his father he was sorry and ask for forgiveness. He needed to be redeemed.
So in fear and trembling the Prodigal headed toward home. He was surprised and overwhelmed to see his father running towards him, and when they met, his father threw his arms around him and lavished him with love, for this son of his was lost, but now had been found.
Our Heavenly Father is sitting on the porch waiting for you to “come to yourself” and come to Him. He is watching and waiting. When you do come to understand that your salvation is within you, you will also acknowledge that you are a sinner in need of your Father’s love, grace, and mercy. When you do, you will have peace in your soul. A new beginning is on the horizon—NO!—it is right there ready for you to live it! Do not neglect to love and worship the author of all life—Almighty God!
Say out loud—“I don’t know what to do Lord, but You do.”
Then you will understand:
“Where there seems to be no way, God will make a way.”
Dear Lord, hold us close to Your heart. Fill us with Your Holy Spirit. May we experience peace beyond all understanding. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen