Are you an older son or a younger son?

September 27, 2017 sermon
By Amanda Conner

Let me invite you to either grab your Bibles or pull up an online version and turn to Luke 15:20-32. This passage is the Parable of the Lost Son, which many of us are familiar with. BUT, if this is the first time ever reading this story, let me give you a quick summary: there are two sons, a younger one and an older one. One day the younger son comes up to the father and asks for his inheritance. He doesn’t feel like waiting until his father passes away, he wants his money NOW. For some unknown reason, the father was kind, and decided to do it. So the younger son takes off with everything and wastes it on some cheap thrills and dumb decisions, while the older son stayed with the father, caring for the land and animals. Eventually, the younger is humbled to the fullest extent, and he decides to go home and try to get a job from his father, ready to do anything just for some food. And the father does something that none of us expects. He forgives the son, and throws him a huge party to celebrate his homecoming.

Now, when we hear this parable, we tend to focus on the younger son and his bad behavior. But what about the older son? He seems to be the “good one,” right? Well let’s analyze his behavior: When the younger son gets a party, he is jealous, bitter, and very rude to his father. He’s so focused on how badly behaved his brother was, he’s missing just how far he is from his father’s heart as well. The only two differences between the sons was the younger realized he sinned and he repented, while the older seemed to have missed both memos that he was just as sinful, maybe more, but it was more hidden.

Are you like the younger or older son? Do you openly admit your sin even though it is a humbling experience to do so? Or do you refuse to accept your sin because it’s not as obvious? This is what I challenge you with this week: Search your heart and pray with God about how to become closer to our Father, and how to not hide our sins so far that we can’t even admit it to ourselves, nor do the opposite where our public sins overwhelm and destroy our lives. Perry Creek you are on mission.

Thank you to Anthony Braswell who spoke in Chapel and gave me the inspiration for this article.