We are all prodigal sons in a way. Mark Twain called this parable the greatest story of love ever told. It is great in its insights about our ingratitude, but also as a testimony to forgiving love. We subject it to misinterpretation, though, when we make it seem that the father's forgiveness of wayward offspring like us is a function of our confession of sin. Methodist founder John Wesley makes that clear with an incisive remark: "So does God frequently cut an earnest confession short by a display of pardoning love" (Commentary on the Bible, p. 446).
Thomas Willadsen Mary Austin Christopher Keating Dean Feldmeyer Ron Love George Reed Bethany Peerbolte
For January 20, 2018:
God Activates by Tom Willadsen — Perhaps God wants us to delight in each other and in the magnitude and depth of divine love. Perhaps the Lord wants to activate our gifts of the Spirit, to use them for the common good.
We are all intimately connected as one body in Jesus. Isaiah celebrates our intimate union with our creator, describing us as the joyful bride of God. Though there had been alienation and rejection from both sides in the past, the prophet describes us as God’s delight. That connection is also emphasized in Paul’s oddly graphic description of church folks as body parts — we need each other because we are not a living, breathing body if we are somehow separated.
When Jesus visited a wedding at Cana in Galilee, he showed that human disappointments matter to him and that he would be prepared to redeem them. This is a story about a young girl's bitter disappointment when she became a bridesmaid.