And he said, “There was a man who had two sons. And the younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of property that is coming to me.’” – Luke 15:11-12a
“There was a man who had two sons.” So begins our two-part story. Part One focuses on the father and his younger son. Let’s call him “Little Brother”. Little Brother tells his father to give him his share of the inheritance His share was one-third since the oldest received two-thirds of the inheritance in ancient Israel.
Likely, the younger son’s third of the estate was tied up in assets. The father would have to liquidate a third of his estate to free up the cash his younger son demanded. More to the point, a slap in the face would have hurt less than the son’s demand. The younger son did not want to wait for his father to die to get what was coming to him. He wanted it now so he could get away from his father and enjoy the good life apart from Him. In short, he did not want his father. He just wanted his father’s stuff.
Imagine a young woman engaged to a young man. She invites him for dinner. She spends all day preparing a gourmet meal. She can’t wait to spend time with him. He shows up right on time but then, to her horror and hurt, he demands two plates to go. He whisks those dinners out the door to enjoy with another woman.
This is often how we treat our Father in heaven. We crave His presents more than His presence. In our prayers, we seek His hand and not His face.
Suggestions for prayer
Thank our Father for His daily kindness and generosity. Ask Him to forgive you for the times you value His gifts over Him, the Giver.
Rev. Richard Zekveld is the pastor of the Covenant Fellowship Church (PCA) in South Holland, Illinois, a Chicagoland suburb. This daily devotional is also available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional.