The lost are welcome home

By Rev. JOHN SNYDER

In Luke 15, Jesus shares the Parable of the Prodigal Son:

There was a man who had two sons. The younger one said to his father, “Father, give me my share of the estate.”

So he divided his property between them. Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs.

He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything. When he came to his senses, he said, “How many of my father’s hired servants have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.”

So he got up and went to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. The son said to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.” But the father said to his servants, “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.

Just like the parable of this prodigal son, there are many that knew God at one time but then they have strayed and walked away from Him. In some cases they are suffering significantly. They are not enjoying the blessings of God and a fulfilling life with Him. They are also missing out on the full plans and purposes God has for them.

Those that are lost or have left like the prodigal can find their way home. God is waiting to welcome them back!

The young man in the parable thought the ways of the world were a better way, but they were not and he reached rock bottom and was lost. God wants those that are lost to return to Him, no matter how far away and how lost. He exchanges misery for peace and joy. He wants to pour out His blessings on all that are hurting and alone. He wants the struggling and lost to return to His presence and to get back into fellowship with His people. He desires all to return and explore the incredible plans and pathways He has for their lives.

The love of God has not diminished towards His sons and daughters. Like the prodigal father, God is yearning to embrace all His children once again. He is waiting and ready.

If you are lost and even like the prodigal, God is waiting to welcome you. He is even praying for your safe return. The issues that led you astray are not what count the most now. Getting back in strong fellowship with God is the primary thing. God wants to bring restoration and healing to the broken and shattered pieces in your life. Being back with God will bring the release of so much pain and hurt. Blessings and peace are waiting for you!

So if this is you – don’t hesitate, don’t wait! This is your time. It is a time to celebrate your return to God! Create and experience a deeper relationship with Him today.

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Finding Faith is written by area pastors. This week’s column comes from Rev. John Snyder, pastor of House of the Lord Fellowship, Lock Haven.

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