Sometimes we believe that God is continuously disappointed with us. He frowns, shakes his head and sighs over our latest sin, mistake or lack of faith. Certainly, God experiences grief and sorrow over His kids misbehavior. Yet if we let the frowning face of God become our dominant view of Him, distance grows between us.
We need a reminder of God’s amazing love for us. So how about the picture of God the Father in the parable of the prodigal son? Consider Luke 15:20 – And he (the prodigal son) arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.”
Do you see all this verse reveals about God’s love for us?
· The Father saw him. If the Father had given up on his son, he might never have checked the horizon for a glimpse of his lost son. Yet while he was a long way off, the father saw him. It was like the father scanned that horizon so often, he immediately recognized something unusual in the distant movement on it. Yet this movement was familiar to the father. He saw something he recognized in his son’s look or walk. God sees you no matter how far you are from Him today.
· The Father felt compassion. He had good reason to feel anger or a need to scold. The son had wasted the inheritance his father had worked hard to provide. Yet upon seeing the son, the father felt a sympathy and love. God feels compassion for you.
· The Father ran to His son. Dignified people never ran. Messengers ran. Fugitives ran away. Children ran around. Fathers walked or rode. Those in need ran to them for help. But the Father ran to His son with an unrestrained love. God runs to us.
· The Father hugged His son. He did not put his hands on his hips in a gesture that said, “so what do you have to say for yourself.” He did not fold His arms in a gesture of suspicion. He embraced his son that communicated love, welcome and protection. The Father embraces you with love, protection and welcome.
· The Father kissed His son. Kissing, in that culture, represented acceptance, joy, respect and welcome. It was a communication reserved for family or friends or social equals. Masters did not kiss slaves. Fathers did not kiss disinherited sons. The Father did not demand an account for the inheritance or lay down conditions for the son’s re-entry into the family. He kissed His son before the son could say anything. The Father kisses you today with joy and acceptance that you are part of His family.
So if you’ve been far from God, you’re not too far to come back. If you’ve been wondering about God’s love for you, He offers the same love that He offered his lost Son. Will we receive God’s love for us today?