Saturday morning started as any other morning. Cleaning. Listening to music. The same playlist I always listen to. And then I heard it. A song. One I had undoubtedly added because at some point it had touched me in much the same way it was now. Had me stop. Think about the words. These words:
There’s no need for any hiding
In the Father’s house you’re met with open arms
And He gives grace without conditions
As you are, with nothing else, just come. -Life.Church Worship
It made me think of a story. A story of another father.
To illustrate the point further, Jesus told them this story: “A man had two sons. The younger son told his father, ‘I want my share of your estate now before you die.’ So his father agreed to divide his wealth between his sons. “A few days later this younger son packed all his belongings and moved to a distant land, and there he wasted all his money in wild living. About the time his money ran out, a great famine swept over the land, and he began to starve. He persuaded a local farmer to hire him, and the man sent him into his fields to feed the pigs. The young man became so hungry that even the pods he was feeding the pigs looked good to him. But no one gave him anything. “When he finally came to his senses, he said to himself, ‘At home even the hired servants have food enough to spare, and here I am dying of hunger! I will go home to my father and say, “Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, and I am no longer worthy of being called your son. Please take me on as a hired servant.”’ “So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him. His son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, and I am no longer worthy of being called your son. “But his father said to the servants, ‘Quick! Bring the finest robe in the house and put it on him. Get a ring for his finger and sandals for his feet. And kill the calf we have been fattening. We must celebrate with a feast, for this son of mine was dead and has now returned to life. He was lost, but now he is found.’ So the party began. Luke 15:11-25, NLT
Maybe you won’t come because you left. You left and squandered what you were given. You were living with the pigs and now you are worried what people will say.
Maybe you don’t know a father like the one described in this story, so you can’t even imagine one welcoming you this way. Yours was critical. His love was conditional. Only given if you met certain expectations. Maybe he was even absent. Or he’s not a father you want to be like.
But this story doesn’t describe him. It describes your Heavenly Father.
And He welcomes you. As you are. And He won’t leave you there.
Come as you are. Let Him love you. Change you. Make you new.
And to hear the other songs that speak to me, and make up the Saturday morning cleaning playlist, you can listen here: