Monday, March 23

Reader: “Give me my share…”

Response: “OK, you got it!”

Scripture: Luke 15: 11-12

“Jesus continued: “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.”

Reader: This is the word of the Lord.   

Response: Thanks be to God.

Some thoughts:

We live in an era of a new trinity. Unlike the real Trinity, this one is not mysterious in the least! You can figure it out naturally and it is easily understood by even the smallest child. It is the trinity of “me, myself, and I.” Those four little, simple, short words speak volumes. The season of Lent is about helping us to recognize how often that idea slips into and shapes our lives and how we are very unlike Jesus. We live in a society, and, indeed in our own lives, where we are very aware of our “rights.” Look at all the lawsuits and all the testimonial commercials on television telling you how much money a certain  lawyer got for them in their lawsuit. Be sure you get what’s coming to you and the so and so law firm will get you what you deserve! It’s about you! Where did we get this idea of my rights?  In this parable, the son was a rightful heir, albeit an impatient, self-centered, short-sighted one! He used another version of the personal trinity with four words. Give me my share!  I’m embarrassed for him. It revealed so much about his heart. Like Adam, he used what his father had given him to rebel against his father. Notice the Father did not reprimand him, humiliate, or dishonor him in his foolish demand. He granted the demand, knowing full well the consequences of this immature, greedy, self-serving request. There are certainly many times when our heavenly Father does the same for us. He does not impose his will or force us in any direction. He lets the truthfulness of our heart’s motives reveal themselves to us and to him.  The father here likewise does not override the son’s stupidity and immaturity. Can you imagine a love like this so honoring and strong, knowing the foolishness that lies ahead? There is no “thy will be done” in this son’s demand! As you pray today, be careful of what you ask for. In God’s gracious way, he may give it to you!

Music:  “It’s All About Me”   Rob Still Rob is one of my IWS students and has captured today’s cultural mindset in a beautiful way!!! Right! (He’s doing a seminar in Hungry.) A little musical change of pace today!   (A song for the Prodigal!!)

O God our Father, help us to nail to the cross of thy dear Son the whole body of our death, the wrong desires of the heart, the sinful devising of the mind, the corrupt apprehensions of the eyes, the cruel words of the tongue, the ill employment of hands and feet; that the old man being crucified and done away, that the new man may live and grow into the glorious likeness thy Son Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, world without end.  Amen.  ―Eric Milner-White, 1884-1964