Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A good feeling


"So he got up and came to his father. But while he was still a long ways off, his father saw him and felt compassion for him, and ran, and embraced him and kissed him." Luke 15:20. This is a wonderful verse for us to comprehend. But before we dive in to understanding this verse let's recall our story. A man's son demands his inheritance, now. The father grants his son's request and the son leaves. Let's think a little here, do you think that this was all done with no conflict? Or maybe not on the fathers side but how about the son...what kind of character did he have...It seems he did not leave on good terms... The son goes to a different land and spends his inheritance on loose living. Now he is on his way back home, coming up the driveway if you will. No phone call, no e-mail, not even snail mail. He just comes. His father sees him. Let's stop there for know.
As with all stories it is hard to understand the deep thoughts...of a character in the story. Sometimes we see a little bit, in their reactions in the story. Today we are going to focus on the father. What kind of man was he? Now guys this is a good example for us. "But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion for him." Most often when one is disobeyed....sinned against...betrayed...there is the feeling of hurt...un-trust, displeasure, bitterness. anger and even hatred. You see this father did not display these things, in fact I like what is said, " felt compassion for him."
What does it mean compassion? It is a word that I myself, have a problem to grasp and practice. It involves words like mercy and sympathy, but with a sense to help...make better...; maybe not just a sense but the actual doing. It may even include forgiveness. So many times when one is going through trials...or sin it is hard to feel compassion for them. You see this father felt compassion right away, I would even venture to say he was waiting for his son to come back. No matter how, when...he came. The important thing was that he came back. To feel compassion, do you understand that it is a feeling. And yes it is a good feeling. Too many times we as men are hard nosed...we lack compassion...we lack feeling...we even lack in our thinking, that it is not a good thing to feel compassion...we don't try to understand compassion or the feeling. We might even think of it as a weakness but it is not. O.K. Guys did you notice what he did when he met his son? That's right he embraced him. That means he hugged him! For some of us that is hard, we don't show our feelings that way. But it is important! It shows a tenderness...and love...much more than words, a hand shake or gifts can show. Now that kissing thing, I will let you figure it out on your own. Remember the parable of the good Samaritan? Luke 10:30-36. How he felt compassion on the man; that was beaten and robbed. How the Samaritan helped him, got him well... That is another good example of compassion. So let's work on compassion! Sometimes men we need to work on it in our own homes! We lack compassion in the everyday living of life. Now men there is an area that most of us struggle with. That is compassion toward our wives or even girls. O how important it is to feel compassion. O how important it is to show compassion. Do them both! Compassion it is a good feeling!

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