the prodigal brother
"The son grew angry at this and would not go in; but his father came out and began to plead with him." —Luke 15:28
We always hear about the prodigal son, but his older brother was at least as prodigal. The older brother looked good but was just as alienated from his father as the younger brother. The younger brother did not feel worthy to be called his father's son (Lk 15:18). However, the older brother spoke of life with his father as slavery (Lk 15:29). He did not know that everything his father had was available to him (Lk 15:31). The older son felt resentful his father had never given him "so much as a kid goat" (Lk 15:29).
Many Christians today are like the older son. We appear to never disobey one of God the Father's orders (Lk 15:29). We are church-goers, good citizens, and hard workers. Our vices are socially acceptable. We look good, but aren't in a good relationship with our heavenly Father. We're not cheerfully serving God but begrudgingly slaving for Him out of fear, habit, or social pressures. Our Father has come out and is pleading with us to accept a personal relationship with Him. Say "Yes" this Lent.
Prayer: Father, may I let the world know I'm happy to be Your child.
Promise: He "does not persist in anger forever, but delights rather in clemency, and will again have compassion on us, treading underfoot our guilt." —Mi 7:18-19
Praise: St. Cyril, though exiled more than once, faithfully pastored his flock. His lessons to new converts, written in the fourth century, survive today and have led the Church to proclaim Cyril as a Doctor of the Church.
Reference: (For a related teaching on Developing a Deep Personal Relationship with Jesus, order, listen to, or download our CD 52-1 or DVD 52 on our website or order our tape on audio AV 52-1 or video V 52.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 12, 2016
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