Read Luke 15:14-19

Does it seem strange that it took the prodigal so long to come to grips with how messed up his life was?  It’s safe to say that things are pretty bad when you are envious of what pigs are eating.  So why did it have to come to that?

Here are two possible reasons…

First, it might have been that the prodigal son was tired of living under his father’s rules and guidance.  Doing his own thing would have seemed like a really great idea.  Unfortunately, the philosophy of “live for today” ignores that tomorrow will bring the consequences of today’s choices.  It might be fun for a time, but eventually we will have to answer for our actions.  When the consequences mounted up and the prodigal son began to feel the despair of self-indulgence, he realized his way was not good at all.  The will of our heavenly Father is like that as well.  The things that He says about how to live may not seem as fun as what we would choose, but His path for our lives is always intended for our good.

Secondly, it may be that the younger brother never felt he could compete with his older brother.  He may have believed he was inadequate or a failure.  It is possible that leaving his home was a way of trying to escape the difficulties he imagined he was face.  Many of us live with a deep sense that something is wrong, but we aren’t sure what to do to make it better.  Often this leads us to run away to things that make us feel good.  We want to escape our problems, but in doing so we run from the One who can help the most.

When his so called friends left and his money was gone the prodigal son realized that he had really blown it.  Maybe he thought he could make it on his own, or possibly he was running from something he didn’t want to face, but the result was the same.  Sitting with the pigs he realized his need was far greater than he ever imagine.  That’s when he finally realized he needed to go home.

Day 3 of 7 from the 2017 Mission Discovery Devotional