He made him draw honey from the rock, and oil from the flinty rock;
He would have fed them also with the finest of wheat; and with honey from the rock I would have satisfied you.”
Dear friends and family,
Let me wish all of you a blessed and Happy Thanksgiving with those you love. May your hearts be filled with the Love of the Father this holiday season and may that love flow out to all those around you. The word HOLIDAY comes from the root words meaning HOLY DAY. Our holidays should be holy days sanctified and set apart to the Lord. Thanksgiving is a time that causes us to focus more on all we have to be thankful for than we might find ourselves realizing and focusing on at other times. Though this should not be the case for us who know and walk with the Lord daily, sadly sometimes it truly is. This Thanksgiving let us focus on the Father’s great love for us and all that we have because of that love. Without that love there would be no salvation for us. As Scripture tells us we “were without God, without the Covenants, and without hope in this world” before Christ came to rescue us from that darkness. When were were saved, we were not only given a down payment of our inheritance through the Spirit, but we also began a journey from darkness to light, from death to life, and from earthy to heavenly. If the Lord did nothing more than that for us in our lifetime we are a people most blessed. However, he DID do even more than that for us in this lifetime. He became our protector and our provider, our healer and our deliverer, our forgiver and our restorer, our strength in our weakness, our hope in our despair, our truth in the midst of darkness, our anchor in the storm, in short…our ALL in ALL! Can a people have more reason to rejoice and give thanks than the people of God? Can a people, no matter what their immediate circumstances, be more blessed than the people of God? Yet so many of God’s people are not in the place of Thanksgiving and gratitude even in the Father’s House because so many of us do now truly know and experience the Father’s love. We know OF it, but we don’t KNOW IT! This was the case with the Prodigal son and his brother. Let’s take a look at that story:
And he said, A certain man had two sons: And the younger of them said to [his] father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth [to me]. And he divided unto them [his] living. And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living. And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want. And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him. And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants. And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son. But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put [it] on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on [his] feet: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill [it]; and let us eat, and be merry: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry. Now his elder son was in the field: and as he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard music and dancing. And he called one of the servants, and asked what these things meant. And he said unto him, Thy brother is come; and thy father hath killed the fatted calf, because he hath received him safe and sound. And he was angry, and would not go in: therefore came his father out, and entreated him. And he answering said to [his] father, Lo, these many years do I serve thee, neither transgressed I at any time thy commandment: and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that I might make merry with my friends: But as soon as this thy son was come, which hath devoured thy living with harlots, thou hast killed for him the fatted calf. And he said unto him, Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine. It was meet that we should make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.
The story of the Prodigal son reveals to us many things concerning our attitudes and heart condition as well as the heart of our Father. Although both the boys lived in the Father’s house and both of them were loved by the Father they themselves never really came to know and understand their Father’s heart or his love for them. The older son believed he was loved because he did everything right and the younger son didn’t know how much he was loved at all. The younger one ran from his responsibilities and his relationship with his Father without so much as a thought as to how that would break his Father’s heart. He was only concerned with his inheritance, what he could get, and he was not willing to wait for it but demanded it NOW, before he was ready to handle it. The Father in his wisdom did not rebuke the son, but gave him the inheritance knowing full well that he didn’t have the maturity or character to handle it and that he would squander it all. He had the attitude that he deserved the inheritance (verse 12, “give me what’s mine”) when he himself had not paid the price for all his Father had, but his Father did. Sometimes that’s the mentality we have with the things of God – that we deserve all these blessings and we become irritated and angry when one of them seemingly is withheld from us. Even though the younger son was focused on himself, the Father loved him. The heart of the Father is so strongly revealed here as our heavenly Father gives us so much we don’t deserve, so much we squander and hold of little value, and so many times we don’t realize the hurt we cause him by the decisions we make and the selfishness we display. That inheritance was the result of the hard work and love of the Father not the child. So it is with us, all that we have is a result of the price paid by Jesus Christ in procuring it for us, and the price the Father paid in watching his Beloved Son be betrayed, abused, and brutally crucified for you and me. Yet even in all this the Father is found in the story LOOKING for the younger son. While he was yet a GREAT WAY OFF the Father saw him and had compassion on him. So it is with us. Even when we are a great way off from the presence of the Father because we have separated ourselves and left his house, when we come to our senses and realize what we have done he sees us though still a great way off ,and has compassion on us and runs to meet us!
1 John 3:1
“Behold what manner of Love the Father has given unto us that we should be called children of God!”
The older son also never knew the love of the Father even though he lived in the Father’s house. He didn’t know the Father’s heart at all. He was working and he was obedient but he never truly received the Father’s love though it was there for him all the time. He too never entered into an identification with the Father’s heart. The Father was after BOTH sons. He tried to awaken love in the older son’s heart for his wayward brother, but his brother couldn’t understand that kind of unconditional love. He needed to have his heart broadened in order to be able to embrace those who have done wrong and hurt another. He had a kind of self-righteousness. This self-righteousness left him standing outside of the Father’s house where he was loved and welcome. He had shut himself out because of his attitudes and inability to love and forgive.
For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what [is] the width and length and depth and height– to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
At this time of year when it seems love and family are so prevalent in our minds and hearts may we not have the selfish heart of the younger brother who left the Father’s house and went into the world for pleasure (riotous living), and found himself eating with the swine (Scripture admonishes us not to cast our pearls before swine – that is demon spirits who have no heart for the Father, His Son, or the truth). Nor do we want to be found with the self-righteous attitude of the older brother who was part of the family, but shut himself out because he couldn’t accept one weaker than himself, one who was NOT faithful n the beginning but who repented and came home in humility and was welcomed back into the fold without question. The older son could not give love and forgiveness to his brother and that hurt the heart of the Father. We find the Father outside with the older son gently pleading with him to come in and make peace with his brother. He wouldn’t go in to the Father so the Father came out to him!
1 John 4:19
“We love because HE first loved us!”
The Parable is left open – we are never told if the older son went in to join his family or not. This is because it is posing a question to us – Will YOU go in? Will you enter into my heart and identify with my love? Will you participate in my love? Will you allow me to awaken my love in you?
Have a blessed and joyous Thanksgiving with those you love. May the Lord give you the heart of the Father and may you truly EXPERIENCE His love in your life.
In His Love,
Solid Rock Ministries