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continuing the conversation – the prodigal son(s)

September 14, 2008

Yesterday was yet another one of The Bridge’s patented great Gatherings and we talked about Jesus’ Parable of the Prodigal Son Sons.  Honestly, I was stunned this week to learn that I’ve misunderstood Jesus’ most popular parable for my whole life!  As a recap, we’re usually taught that the younger son is the “prodigal” son that chose the wrong path in life and that the older one is the “good son” whose path we should follow.  The problem is that Jesus was teaching that neither of them had chosen the right path to get to The Father because the only path is to admit you’ve been wrong and accept grace.

Now people always talk about how hard it is to forgive, but in my experience it is equally difficult to accept forgiveness.  Accepting grace is a lot harder than it sounds.  For instance, even though I say that I’m forgiven by God’s grace, when I sin I don’t feel forgiven; even after repentance I feel like God is angry at me and that I’m cut off from His love until I work my way back to Him.  My heart stubbornly wants to refuse grace.

I’m going to use a test case for today’s conversation question:  Would it be harder for you to forgive someone for driving irresponsibly and crippling someone you loved or would it be harder for you to accept the forgiveness of someone you’d crippled in an accident that was your fault?

Is it harder for you to give grace to people or accept grace from God?

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Lynn permalink
    September 14, 2008 11:06 pm

    Wow. I’m really glad you asked that tonight. I’ve been struggling with knowing how to feel towards God after I sin – ashamed, embarrassed, exposed, the object of anger, the object of love. I’ve got some areas of serious sin that cause me to do things like promise God I’ll do “this and this and this”. I didn’t realize until recently that what I was doing was trying to get back to God without having to accept grace.

    While I’m bad about holding grudges and giving forgiveness, I might be even worse at accepting it because I think a lot of myself and my morals. I’m not sure what I think. This one’s got me putting on my thinking hat…

  2. Mary Bea permalink
    September 15, 2008 11:54 am

    harder for me to accept forgiveness because I would struggle with forgiving myself…If I was the son that had come home I would probably have been telling everyone at the celebration how much I didn’t deserve this…”yeah Dad has been great to forgive…but it’s wasted on the likes of me!!” For some reason I think we tend to believe we are being humble but we’re really being kinda selfish…like when you give a gift to someone & they respond with…Oh, I have one of these already. Suddenly your gift isn’t good enough. So by not allowing myself to jump in a saturate myself in my Father’s grace I diminish His gift…this reminds me of a Newsboys song…”let’s get drenched under God’s good rain, caught in a deluge of mercies…like a pebble clings to dirt we’re still clinging to bedrock sin, let’s get swept off our feet again caught in a landslide of love”

  3. Ken permalink
    September 15, 2008 12:46 pm

    Man I’m glad to be married to my wife(marybea)!! She’s smart!!

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