Parable of the Prodigal Son

  Autumn

  To many, culture has demarcated a path and a mentality that is not always the right one. The lack of paternity or communion with our natural parents towards us leaves a void and a lack of identity that with time becomes normal. That way most of us find it difficult to take our proper place as children of God or enter into a relationship with our Heavenly Father since we do not know and never learned to have a true relationship with our earthly parents. Sometimes when things happen in a different way than what we expected; we blame God, or that maybe we’re not enough for God to be heard, but truth is it has to see more with us than any other thing.

   In Luke 15: 11-32 we see the story of a father and his sons: the parable of the prodigal son: we can see a clear example of God’s love for the one who has lost it’s way. We are going to compare the story with reality; which in this case of the story, God typifies a Father.


First: 

    When one of his sons asked for his inheritance, the father called both of them and gave each one what corresponded. One decided to leave (breaking his relationship) and the other stayed with his father.
The son who left spent all his money and started to be in need. He didn’t know how to make a good spend of what he had, so he wasn’t ready to receive it. 
Many times we are not ready – mature – to receive things.      

   When we decide to hurry and carry out our own plans, God process starts for us, which leads us to always consider that we should wait for God’s time and His plans for us.
So this son, had hard times when he was in need and found himself in poverty.   This way t
his hard process led the son to wake up and understand his mistake.    He decided to go back to his father and he was received with love.

    God always waits for us with love when we recognize our mistakes before Him. We should always wait for God’s timing over every single thing in our lives. If we go forward in acquiring or satisfying our personal desires, we can lose what God had for us when we go after something that would possibly not be the best for us.

   We do not want our plans to ruin the original plans that God had for us: 

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the LORD. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.  Isaiah 55:8.

For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.Jeremiah 29:11.

God first prepares us to give us our inheritance. For this, we need to have a relationship with him, a daily communion. We must always seek God’s approval in ALL things and not do things in our own way.

Second:

    His brother noticed that his brother came back home and he was upset. He was jealous because his father had made a feast in honor to his brother. He stayed with his father all this time and he considered his father never did a feast to him or something similar, yet he didn’t have a true relationship with his father. He worked with his father identifying himself as a worker and not as a son.

The son had no  identity of son but as a simple worker of his father.

• The youngest son had the right identity of son.
• The father was loving with his two sons.

   We can say: communion and parenting is really important for us. It builds up the identity of a child.  It always comes by revelation. Our identity comes to be revelated to us when we have a relationship with God.

The difference between them is one of them had identity and the other didn’t.

  God’s plans are always better than our plans

He will always give us of what is  better for us.

(Even in the hard times when we don’t understand)

God is a loving father and wants to have a relationship with us at all times, to face everything in life and the final purpose of  it is to glorify Him through everything.

   We should not worry about our future

   God has an agenda for your life; it has been specially designed for us. That is why we must be attentive to Him to fulfill His purpose in us every day.

Don’t worry about anything, but pray and ask God for everything you need, always giving thanks for what you have.”

Philippians 4:6

In this story, who you identify with?

Do you identify yourself with the eldest borther?  Or the youngest one?

The beautiful thing of this story is; even if you identify with the one who lost everything, or the one who stayed; the Father will be loving and forgiving for both of the casses.   If you’ve misspent what God gave you or maybe you tried to make things in your own timing, remember God is a God of second chances, forgiving and loving; He’s waiting for your process to change you so you can come to understand God’s will and purpose for you. And also he wants to give you His identify and his confidence in Him that everything will be ok; he provides exactly what you need in the time you need it. That’s why it is very important to have a relationship with Him, so he can gives us His identity.

Finally: let’s take care of our relationship with our Heavenly Father. Bearing in mind that only by having a true relationship with Him we can know the will of God for our lives so that we can follow His purpose for our lives.

 

How do you think deeply when you have created a superficial manner of thinking? 

How do you think deeply when you have created a superficial manner of thinking? “If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.”    Colossians 3:1-3.

We should pray and be disciplined in the pursuit of that new mind-set of setting your minds on things that are above. “Whatever is true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worth of praise, think about these things” Philippians 4:8.
In other words Paul is calling us to discipline the focus of our minds so that we fix the mind, the focus of the mind on things that are worthy and that have the potential to deepen and strenghthen and purify our souls. 🙂

 

-John Piper.
#bible #thoughts #God #Christ

Emotions and decisions

We always say that we depend on God, that God is everything for us, but in some ways we leave God out of  the decisions we make and from time to time we come to think God agrees with us when we haven’t even asked him about it, but we just guess and feel like it’s ok. We come to think it’s ok because ”we feel good and God wants us to feel good..it must be His will.”

Proverbs 16:3 says; ”Roll your works upon the Lord [commit and trust them wholly to Him; He will cause your thoughts to become agreeable to His will, and] so shall your plans be established and succeed.”

So it means that God’s will for us is to ask Him for advice and help us in all our ways, in every aspect of our lives, job, family, spouse and so on, and that our ways and purposes must be His will.

The problem is sometimes we are guided by what we feel. We must know that emotions are a gauge; not a guide. Emotions aren’t imperatives; they’re not your boss. They’re indicatives; they’re reports. That’s why Paul wrote, “Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions” Romans 6:12.

There are times we make decisions because we felt like it was the right thing, we must not forget that not all ways that seem right for men are right for God, that’s why we should wonder first about what’s God’s will for our lives. We can think something is good for us, and indeed it can be a good thing; but what God has for us and He’s will is ALWAYS the best for us.

We must remember that God gaves us own domain and we decide to be guided by God and not emotions to make decisions.

Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth is speaking.

The point of all is we had better focus on our attention to becoming a kind of person not perfecting a kind of list or a kind of rational set of criteria by which we will hone our reasoning skills and make all of our important decisions.

That list will never be long enough to cover everything and then heart acts before we could consult it anyway on most of the things we do and before we engage in any reasoning process. That heart is a profound set of feelings and commitments and convictions and preferences. So, Proverbs says, “keep your heart with all vigilance, for out of it flow the springs of life.” And that heart includes emotions, big time.

This is Romans 12:2; “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good, acceptable and perfect.”

What does the renewal of the mind for the sake of decision making involve? And verse two says that the effect of this renewal is that we approve.

It is the renewal of our preferences, our desires, our longings, our deepest wants. That goes into the renewing of the mind. And the confirmation of that for me is over in Ephesians four where Paul says, “Be renewed in the” — and this amazing phrases — “spirit of your minds”. I always wonder: What is that? You know, being renewed in your minds all sounds intellectual. Being renewed in the spirit of your mind is: Oh, when Paul talks about mind and the renewal of the mind he has got more in mind than merely rational capacities. This mind has a spirit. It has a bent. It is like: Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus who made this massive, approved decision to humble himself.

Now why does that matter? In Ephesians five verses earlier Paul tells us why it matters that we be renewed in the spirit of our mind. Here is what he says, “The Gentiles are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardness of their heart.”

So if you walk with Paul down, down, down deep into the root of things, you might have thought he would end by saying, “They are alienated from God and they are darkened in their understanding because of the ignorance that is in them, period.” So let’s get about changing ignorance. And that is not where he stops. He says, “Because of the ignorance that is in them, due to the hardness of their heart.” Beneath the intellectual problem of ignorance of God is the moral problem, the emotional problem of the heart. It is hard against God.

So the reason the mind must be renewed so that it can decide good things in the spirit of the mind is not just rational or factual. That is not our deepest problem. Our deepest problem is feelings and preferences, not reasoning. Reasoning is affected by sin, for sure. But the deepest problem is our hard hearts.

So my conclusion from this is not that we check our minds at the door when we enter the house of wis-dom, like: Oh, thinking doesn’t matter here, I have got some emotions to deal with. No, that is not where I am going. But that we realize that  every decisions are a complex response of heart and hand or this spirit of the mind. And that is okay.  We are to be renewed in both.

Neither is perfect. The rational faculties are not perfect and the emotional faculties are not perfect. And neither is useless. When the mind has done what it can do in discerning the pros and the cons of a situation — so I think that is what you should do — weighs the pros and cons of job possibilities and by all means spouse, who you are going to marry and so on. That is not wrong to weigh the possibilities with your mind. The psalmist says, however, “Delight yourself in the Lord and the Lord will give you the desires of your heart.”

So when you have done all the rational weighing you can, the renewal of your mind being deep that is centered on delighting in God and, therefore, those desires that go up, they are not negligible. They should be paid attention to as they accord with God’s will.

Sources: Bible, me and DesiringGod.

It’s not about me: book quotes.

 

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We are deeply loved by God, but central? fundamental? the answer is no. The world doesn’t move around us. Our confort is not God’s priority and if it is, something has gone wrong. If we are the center of everything, how do we explain life challenges as death, sickness, economy crises or earthqueakes? God centered life works; and it rescue us from a life that doesn’t work. Life makes sense when we accept our place and purpose because God loves us and His plans are always best for us.

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We can look around and see just mess and hardships, but when we look to God and His glory, the perspective changes. We need God’s glory, the strength from God to keep going.  When we want to see God’s glory, we want to see everything that God is. God doesn’t shows His glory for His own good, but ours.

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God has control over everything. His knowledge directs his infinite force. Sometimes people rely on knowledge over God, but we can find humility by seeking God, He is merciful even when we don’t deserve it.

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We can face different hard situations in life, sickness, heartbreaks, death.. God takes everything and gives us in exchange a big reward, eternal life. Life is just a moment, and the reward is worth the wait, so we need to keep trusting God through everything.

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God’s love has no end, and saying it’s not about me doesn’t mean I’m not loved. If everything was about me, then everything depends on me, because God loves me, It’s not about me.

 

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The call for all christians is:

  • 1 Corinthians 10:31

So if you eat, or if you drink, or if you do anything, do it for the glory of God.”

  • Matthew 5:16

In the same way, you should be a light for other people. Live so that they will see the good things you do and praise your Father in heaven.”

  • Ephesians 1:13-14

    It is the same with you. You heard the true message, the Good News about the way God saves you. When you heard that Good News, you believed in Christ. And in Christ, God put his special mark on you by giving you the Holy Spirit that he promised. 14 The Spirit is the first payment that guarantees we will get all that God has for us. Then we will enjoy complete freedom as people who belong to him. The goal for all of us is the praise of God in all his glory.”

The message it’s about Him. Doesn’t matter what people think about me, but what people think about God by observing what I do, how I speak and so on. That’s how we should reflect Him throught us.

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Salvation shows God’s mercy.  Salvation glorifies the Saviour, not the saved. Legalism doesn’t reject Christ, they trust Christ, but they don’t trust Christ only. We are saved by grace and not for what we do. Legalism takes away the joy. My salvation is about Him. God doesn’t need us to make His job. We are timely messengers, ambassadors by His goodness and not by our intelligence or actions.

 

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My fights are about Him. The hard things we can face in this world are just a little part for what God is saving for us, still if we have issues in life, we have them because it has a purpose for God’s glory. We have to live with faith and trusting in God, to reflect God’s glory even through our hardships.

 

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My success is about Him.  Some people when they’re successful in life, they forget what brought them into that success. Success make people forget. But seeing that we exist to give honor to His name, even we are successful we need to remember that we have to glorify God through that success.  Doesn’t matter about our language or what we know, or what we may have, what matter is our life style and that a God centered life is the right way to live, because we’ve been created with the purpose to bring honor to Him.

Blessings! 🙂

Things to remember

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There are times when we simply get tired of waiting, we start to lose hope for different reasons, we think God forgot about what He promised, or just when people tell us or try to make us think ”you’re crazy”, ”nothing will happen”, sometimes they just feel pity for us because they don’t know what faith is. But we do, so don’t worry about them.

Yesterday I was reading a post from a christian blog called Desiring God, a great resource for daily meditation of God’s word 🙂 and I took from there two things of what we should think about when we’re feeling like this in our wait:

1. Humility

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Psalm 39:5.

You gave me only a short life. Compared to you, my whole life is nothing. The life of every human is like a cloud that quickly disappears.

Luke 17:7-10.

”Suppose one of you has a servant who has been working in the field, plowing or caring for the sheep. When he comes in from work, what would you say to him? Would you say, ‘Come in, sit down and eat’?

Of course not! You would say to your servant, ‘Prepare something for me to eat. Then get ready and serve me. When I finish eating and drinking, then you can eat.’

The servant should not get any special thanks for doing his job. He is only doing what his master told him to do.

It is the same with you. When you finish doing all that you are told to do, you should say, ‘We are not worthy of any special thanks. We have only done the work we should do.’”

 

2. Trust

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  • He is powerful:  means He’s in control, He’s capable of helping us and changing things. 2 Corinthians 9:8.

”And God can give you more blessings than you need, and you will always have plenty of everything. You will have enough to give to every good work.”

  • He is loving: it means that there is care and purpose behind all He does. He is faithful to help us now and bring us blessings later. His judgement and timing is perfect.

Truth is, He owes us nothing, yet He has promised to give us everything we need.

Philippians 4:19.

”My God will use his glorious riches to give you everything you need. He will do this through Christ Jesus.”

Psalm 27:14.

”Wait for the Lord’s help. Be strong and brave and wait for the Lord’s help.”

 

We need to keep trusting knowing our place and keep doing what God wants us to do. When it seems that nothing’s happening, God is still working on us and for the purpose He has for us. 🙂

It’s not about me

its-not-about-me

 

There really is more to this life than you’ve been told.

We’ve been demanding our way since day one …

“I want a spouse that makes me happy and coworkers that always ask my opinion.”

“I want weather that suits me and traffic that helps me and government that serves me.”

Self-promotion. Self-preservation. Self-centeredness …

“It’s all about me.”

They all told us it was, didn’t they? And we took them up on it. We thought self-celebration would make us happy …

But believing that has created chaos — noisy homes, stress-filled businesses, cutthroat relationships. We’ve chased so many skinny rabbits, says Max Lucado, that we’ve missed the fat one: the God-centered life.

If you want to shift into high gear with purpose, this is it: life makes sense when we accept our place! Our pleasures, our problems, our gifts and talents … when they’re all for the One who created us, we suddenly gain what we’ve been missing and find what we’ve been seeking. “

 

no-se-trata-de-mi-max-lucado-libroThis book is about giving God the right place, in a world where we’ve been told that we are the ones that matter, in a world of people living in competitions and trying to gain attention and recognition..where we’re guided by our own nature, which says ego is a normal thing, and that’s why we are not really happy in the end. The goal is not our own glory, and trying to make life ”only about ourselves” pushes happiness out of our reach. For some people troubles of life seem to be very BIG and serious, because they think that life is about themselves.

Sometimes we are out of place, thinking we have the right to be there, but actually, we’ve been created just to show God’s glory through us, not to glorify ourselves. Just like the moon.. we can be like the moon that only shines because of the sun, God’s the sun and we are the moon. Without the sun, the moon is only a rock, it wouldn’t shine without the sun and it has been created with that purpose, so it is happy to bring light every night.

2 Corinthians 3:18

So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord–who is the Spirit–makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.