God pursues us…to make us sons and daughters.
1 John 3:1 See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him.
Romans 8:15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”
Galatians 4:6 And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!”
We were never meant to work for approval, but instead operate out of “son-ship.”
Think about the story of the prodigal son…
Luke 15:11-32 And he said, “There was a man who had two sons. 12 And the younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of property that is coming to me.’ And he divided his property between them. 13 Not many days later, the younger son gathered all he had and took a journey into a far country, and there he squandered his property in reckless living.
When you surrender your life to Christ, He begins to really go after your heart, and that makes some things difficult. God says, “This area of your heart, I want it.” But we don’t want to give it. If you have a historic struggle with something that just doesn’t go away easily, lust, anger, bitterness, there is going to be this temptation as you begin to follow Him that maybe it would be easier if you ran back to those things.
Refusing son-ship, saying, “No thank You. Give me what’s mine and let me go,” always leads to slavery to that thing.
14 And when he had spent everything, a severe famine arose in that country, and he began to be in need. 15 So he went and hired himself out to one of the citizens of that country, who sent him into his fields to feed pigs. 16 And he was longing to be fed with the pods that the pigs ate, and no one gave him anything. 17 “But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have more than enough bread, but I perish here with hunger! 18 I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Treat me as one of your hired servants.”’ 20 And he 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.
While he was a long way off! Sometimes we have gone so far away from God—maybe you have wondered so far away today. And the Father was scanning the horizon, LOOKING for him. And he was not looking for him with condemnation, but with compassion.
We have to understand too, that in this Jewish culture that men over 30 were not to run. That it was considered undignified. Robes were long, and to run you would have to pull it up. Not only is he running, he’s saying it doesn’t matter what people have in their mind about me, how religious, I am a Father who loves with compassion. This is the father we have!
Then you have to see that the boy stinks, he smells like pigs! And this Greek word for kiss here means that he kisses over and over again. Like he cannot get enough of his boy!
Jesus is saying, “This is what my father is like.”
21 And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ 22 But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet. 23 And bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate. 24 For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate.
So there was this idea of, “We’re going to get back and we’re going to have to do all these things in order for God to love us, for God to justify us, for God to walk with us.” And the son in the story shows up and says, “I’ll be your servant.” But what does the father say? “Bull, get me a ring. You’re my son, not my servant.” I don’t need you to prove anything to ME!
25 “Now his older son was in the field, and as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing. 26 And he called one of the servants and asked what these things meant. 27 And he said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fattened calf, because he has received him back safe and sound.’ 28 But he was angry and refused to go in. His father came out and entreated him,
Notice the father—goes after both boys. Two different types, but he pursues them both.
29 but he answered his father, ‘Look, these many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed your command, yet you never gave me a young goat, that I might celebrate with my friends. 30 But when this son of yours came, who has devoured your property with prostitutes, you killed the fattened calf for him!’ 31 And he said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours.
REALLY?! That’s all you wanted. Out of all that your father has! You could have had more than a goat!
32 It was fitting to celebrate and be glad, for this your brother was dead, and is alive; he was lost, and is found.’”
This party is not just for your brother–it is for you too! That all my children share in it!
Have you experienced the Father’s Love? Are you operating out of son-ship today?
You can…he’s looking over the horizon waiting for you to come home.