“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding…” Proverbs 3:5
“Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.” Psalms 20:7
TRUST! TRUST! TRUST! … All relationships and many other things and situations are based on this small but important virtue in life – TRUST! Without trust, a relationship will not thrive and grow up to mature into something. But how many of us take this virtue seriously to build on it and nurture it in our live? Sitting down with a dear friend of mine yesterday, we held a lengthy talk about issues of life and how little things, the small foxes that we do not take care of are ruining our vineyards – specifically regards trust! Afterwards, I had to sit down and re-evaluate myself and get to know where I stand! Am I taking care of the small foxes that are ruining my vineyard? The vineyard of my relationships, friends, ministry, work, family and anything that I find my hands doing? Take a look at this important virtue in your life as well. Solomon the wise man ever to live said in Songs of Solomon 2:15 that “Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that ruin the vineyards, our vineyards that are in bloom.”
We have built and banked on several people and things and put our trust in such things and people that we know they cannot disappoint us; but let me submit it to you this day that one day and God forbid, they will disappoint you. We all have friends who are so dear to us and we well know that they can stand with us at all times; but it comes a time when no one is there for you. At such a time, what can you do? Will you curse and cry because you have been betrayed? One time I had such an experience. The bible says in Jeremiah 17:5 that “… cursed is the one who trusts in man, who depends on flesh for his strength…” I had a friend whom I thought that I can confide in and I did share some of my critical and sensitive issues of my life only to hear them spreading amidst people like wild fire. Such things hurt and break us and to some extent, our image is tarnished and tainted and it takes time to repair it and also to mend up the broken relationship with the said person.
Once we are at such a point, what can we do? This is the place where we allow God to work on our hearts, put our hurt emotions and feelings away and let go and let God. Has anyone been in a worse situation more than Joseph was? Joseph was betrayed by his own brothers whom he really trusted and knew that they cannot do anything to hurt him or allow anything or anyone to hurt or harm him. They sold him to the Midian traders and later he was sold in Egypt to be a slave only for God to raise him up to be a governor in a foreign land and he ended up saving his brothers who had betrayed him from the severe famine that had come upon the land. Jesus himself had to be betrayed by his own disciple whom He had stayed with for three and half years. We need to realize that no one on this earth who is perfect; we all have the potential to betray each other. One thing though, we must learn to take back the betrayal, learn from it and proceed.
Many times we don’t understand why people we love/know/trust turn against us not realizing that we are the ones chosen to go through it to be the perfect example of the Bride being prepared for the marriage. Solomon tells us that we trust in the Lord with all our heart… not a portion of it, but all of it and He the Lord almighty, will make our paths straight. One of the ways He makes your paths straight is making sure that your mind, will, desires and thoughts are aligned to his. When u r aligned to him, you do not struggle to do and accomplish his will. It doesn’t matter if there are people backing u or not. Many times we find it hard to trust God in some circumstances simply because we cannot fathom or see ahead what God has in store for us for allowing us to go through such situation. But as Gold is passed through fire to refine it and make it pure, God allows us to go through such circumstances to teach us to fully trust in him.
David had to trust fully in God while in the wilderness when the bear and Lion came and attacked his father’s sheep. Moreover, he had to depend and trust in God while he faced goliath and when he had defeated goliath single handedly, the whole army of Israel who were cowards before ran past David pursuing the philistines whom they were afraid of before. They were shouting for victory as if they were the ones who had fought the goliath. You need to understand that when God wants to take u to greater heights, He must thoroughly work on you. He might even make u lose trust in people because He wants u to build your full trust in Him, He will even cause those u know/trust to turn against you or stab you in the back to prove that He is your shade. When He raises you up, many people will come to celebrate with you as if they had fought the battle with you; but what you need to do is; do not revoke them or feel bad. Allow them to celebrate with you and think God that he gave you the grace to run the race and fight the battle. That way, you block any loopholes that the enemy might have used to make you think otherwise and get you down or discouraged.
When you are going through a storm, don’t complain or worry because you have been ordained to something much greater. What you have to realize is that you are the only one who can fit in those shoes at that time! The storm is your staircase to your greatness. Apparently, I have noticed right hand.start by building a strong relationship with God the rest He’ll put into placethat many of us, me included, we are so fast to question God when we are going through tough seasons and especially seasons where we are secluded and God is dealing with us. If Moses could have complained when God took him to the wilderness for forty years to deal with him, then, I am sure, he wouldn’t have been ready to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt. When we learn and understand who God is and we are aware of his purpose in our lives, we will readily comply with his discipline and seasons that he takes us through the wilderness to trim/train and prepare us for what He wants us to be.
Where then should we put our trust? First we should learn that we cannot trust men until we have learnt to trust God. The bible warns us on several places that we shouldn’t put our trust in. Let us explore some of them:
a) Do not place your trust in weapons. – This world is full of people who place their confidence in guided missiles, fighter planes, bombs, automatic rifles, knives and spears. Jesus said: “All who take the sword will perish by the sword.” (Matthew 26:52). David continues to say “Some trust in chariots, and some in horses; But we will trust in the name of the Lord our God” (Psalm 20:7). In Revelation John writes: “He who kills with the sword must be killed with the sword” (Revelation 13:9). Physical violence is reciprocating and self-perpetuating. You cannot solve your problems with a weapon.
b) Do not place your trust in riches. – Jesus speaking to the rich young ruler, He told him “I tell you the truth; it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” Matthew 19:23-24. Did you ever realize that riches can hinder you from doing God’s will? Many of us forget the giver of the riches and concentrate on the riches. David says in Psalms 49:6-9 that “You cannot buy eternal life.”Those who trust in their wealth And boast in the multitude of their riches, None of them can by any means redeem his brother, Nor give to God a ransom for him … That he should continue to live eternally, And not see the Pit” Paul wrote in 1 Timothy 6:17 “Command those who are rich in this present age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy”
c) Do not place your trust in yourself. – Many people place their trust in their own righteousness. But Jesus speaking in a parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others in Luke 18:9-14. Do you justify yourself as the Pharisee did or you are humble as the tax collector? Many trust in their own relative goodness. They think they will be saved just because others are worse. This ignores the consequences of sin. We are all sinners and can only be saved by the grace of God. The folly of trusting our own strength is exposed by death. Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 1:9 and said “Yes, we had the sentence of death in ourselves that we should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead” Dare not trust your own.
d) Do not place your trust in man or in governments. – David writes and says “It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the Lord Than to put confidence in princes” (Psalm 118:8-9). Some people expect the government or some political system to solve their problems. Any form of government is bad if the people in charge are bad, and most politicians are not known for their goodness. The only resources the government has come from God. Trust in God rather than in governments. To trust in man is to depart from the Lord. “Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart departs from the Lord… but blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, and whose hope is the Lord. For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, Which spreads out its roots by the river, And will not fear when heat comes; But its leaf will be green, And will not be anxious in the year of drought, Nor will cease from yielding fruit” (Jeremiah 17:5).
e) Do not place your trust in words of men – The society in which Isaiah was living was similar to ours; this is what he wrote: “No one calls for justice nor does any plead for truth. They trust in empty words and speak lies; They conceive evil and bring forth iniquity” (Isaiah 59:4). He also said “woe unto me, a man of unclean lips and I live amidst people of unclean lips” Isaiah 6:5. You need to realize that where you live has got a way of affecting you. Paul said “Indeed, let God be true but every man a liar” (Romans 3:4). We need to trust in the Lord. He is not a man that he should lie, nor change his mind.
Once we cease from trusting in the above named places and we put our trust in God, this come with benefits as well. You need to realize that nothing we do unto God is for granted. He repays whatever we do for him and unto him.
1) You will be blessed if you trust in God. – David realized this and he said “Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him” (Psalm 2:12). He continues… “Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who trusts in Him!” (Psalm 34:8). “O Lord of hosts, blessed is the man who trusts in you!” (Psalm 84:12).
2) Place your confidence in the word of God. – “Every word of God is pure; He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him” (Proverbs 30:5). “He who heeds the word wisely will find good, and whoever trusts in the Lord, happy is he” (Proverbs 16:20). “As for God, His way is perfect; the word of the Lord is proven; He is a shield to all who trust in Him” (Psalm 18:30).
3) In times of trouble, place your trust in God. - “Trust in Him at all times, you people; Pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us” (Psalm 62:8); “The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart greatly rejoices, and with my song I will praise Him” (Psalm 28:7); “Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You” (Psalm 56:3); “Oh, how great is Your goodness, Which You have laid up for those who fear You, Which You have prepared for those who trust in You In the presence of the sons of men! You shall hide them in the secret place of Your presence From the plots of man; You shall keep them secretly in a pavilion From the strife of tongues” (Psalm 31:19-20).
4) The Lord is merciful to those who place their trust in Him. - “Let your mercies come also to me, O Lord – Your salvation according to your word. So shall I have an answer for him who reproaches me, for I trust in your word” (Psalm 119:41-42); “But I have trusted in your mercy; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation” (Psalm 13:5); “Many sorrows shall be to the wicked; But he who trusts in the Lord, mercy shall surround him” (Psalm 32:10).
5) Trust in God for the salvation of your soul - “The Lord redeems the soul of His servants, And none of those who trust in Him shall be condemned” (Psalm 34:22); “Behold, God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid; For yes, the Lord, is my strength and my song; He also has become my salvation” (Isaiah 12:2); “The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold” (Psalm 18:2).
“You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you” (Isaiah 26:3); Peace is your portion if you trust in the Lord. “And those who know your name will put their trust in you; for You, Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you” (Psalm 9:10). The Lord will always be there for those who trust in him. He has promised never to leave or forsake us. “Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, Which cannot be moved, but abides forever“ (Psalm 125:1). The Lord has promised to stabilize those who depend on him. Where is your trust this day? Do you trust in men and other things that can let you down? Better to put your trust in the Lord whom you are sure that He will never ever let you down!
“Our father who art in heaven…” Matthew 6:6
I do believe at one time or another in our lives we were all born. Biology tells us that for a child to be born there must be a male and a female and either becomes the father and the mother to the child. In our lives as well, we have fathers who are biological, spiritual and also mentors whom we call or refer to as “a father”. The father figure in a person’s life is very important. He speaks, stands in place of and plays the role of God in our lives. Fathers are people that we all yearn to have and be. All men look forward to be fathers someday and speaking to several men in the past week, I got myself asking a simple question: “God in heaven is our father. When He looks at us down on earth, do we reflect his characteristics as a father?”
I have come to realize that every young man’s dream is to raise up a family and be a responsible father. Every young lady wants someday to be married to someone who will be a responsible husband and take care of her and the children thereof. But looking at the institution of fatherhood today, it has been abused, neglected and looked down upon. You will realize that many women these days say that they can do without men in their lives. All they need is to get a child and then the man can move on with his life and she can take care of the child all alone. I do not disagree, you are well able to do that; but the question arises, when your child asks you where his/her father is, what answer will you give? This is where we go wrong and it is the high time that we realized this and changed the course of this generation. The long term consequence is that, when this child grows up without the father-figure in his/her life, when he/she reaches the age of accountability, there will be issues that will arise and it will be hard to deal with.
On the other hand, men have neglected their role as fathers and have delegated this duty to women. In some instances, men have denied or refused to own up the consequences of their actions and due to that, we have a generation of people who are lack some sort of identity. Once you lack identity, you will try and find your identity in many places and thus you end up messing your life. When will we learn? I believe the reason for all this is that we ourselves we do not know our heavenly father. You can never be able to do anything until you have known how it is done. For you to operate a TV set or any other electrical appliance or machine, you have first to bond with the manufacturer’s manual and thus, you are able to operate the appliance. The same applies to us. It until we have known who God is as our father, then we will be able to emulate him and be responsible fathers just as he is.
When we know the attributes of God as our father, we will emulate him and always yearn to get deeper to know him deeper and be like him. Jesus speaking to his disciples, he told them when they pray, they should approach God as a father and not a deity or a being that they are not aware of do not know. This is what the bible says: “But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father...” Matthew 6:6. We need to first know that God is our father. With this in mind, we can approach him with no fear at all. Today, let’s talk about God as a father. What are his attributes that we need to know about him as our father? Paul says in Philippians 3:10 that [For my determined purpose is] that I may know Him [that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His Person more strongly and more clearly], and that I may in that same way come to know the power outflowing from His resurrection.” (Amplified bible) Paul’s determination encouraged the Philippians to also grow in their knowledge about God. Today, you and I are the Philippians of the day and we should have the same thirst and hunger that the Philippians had in their quest to know God. Jesus said in Matthew 5:6 that “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” What is your hunger and thirst for this day?
We need to know God as our father:
a) Loves us – The bible says in Romans 5:8 that “God shows and clearly proves His [own] love for us by the fact that while we were still sinners, Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One) died for us.” It is evident that God loved and still loves us. When we were lost in sin all dirty and filthy, God chose to come and embrace us in his undying and uncompromising love. Many of us, once something happens that we do not like or appreciate, we shun away our love but God doesn’t act in such a manner – instead He embraces us.
b) Forgives us – Matthew 6:14 says “For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.” It doesn’t matter how gross our sins are, God promises to forgive us if we in turn forgive others who wrong us. It is unfortunate that as human beings, we do not forgive; instead we hold grudges against each other. Come to think of it, how would it be if God held a grudge upon you? This gives you all the reason to forgive.
c) After God forgives us, he accepts us back home – In Luke 15, we read the story of the prodigal son. He went squandered all that was his and he was in want. As a natural father, it is natural that if the son came back home, he wouldn’t have any share of the father’s wealth because he already got his share and squandered it. The difference with God as our father is that He accepts us back. It doesn’t matter whether we had our share of inheritance and squandered it or not. When we are lost in sin, disobeying God, going against his will and plan, we are squandering what he has given us but he loves us anyway and when we turn back to him in repentance just as the prodigal son did, he will accept us back. John 6:37b says “… and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.”
d) He disciplines those he loves – Solomon said in Proverbs 13:24 “He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.” We have seen that God loves us as his own and because he loves us, He will never allow us to trend in the wrong paths because he loves us; instead, he will always bring us back on track and discipline us. Paul reminds us that “the Lord corrects and disciplines everyone whom He loves, and He punishes, even scourges, every son whom He accepts and welcomes to His heart and cherishes. You must submit to and endure [correction] for discipline; God is dealing with you as with sons. For what son is there whom his father does not [thus] train and correct and discipline?” Hebrews 12:6-7
e) God sacrifices for his own, them that He loves – John 3:16 talks of God’s love. The bible tells us that God is love and that is his nature. Love goes a long way and can do anything. John reminds us that For God so loved us that he gave his one and only begotten son. God as your heavenly father loves you and me so much that He is ready and willing to give anything for you and me. If this is the case, how much more then should we love him back? How much more should we love others?
f) He gives us what we ask for (provider) – Jesus speaking to his disciples, he taught them how to pray and then he told them this as He was encouraging them… “Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” Luke 11:11-13. Jesus was encouraging the disciples reminding them that God is not unjust. The same way we earthly fathers treat our children and give them exactly what they want, so shall He also provide unto us what we ask of him.
g) He is our role model – The bible tells us in Matthew 5:48 “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” Our God, our father is perfect and all that he does is perfect. The same he expects of us. Peter reminds us and tells us “just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.” 1 Peter 15-16. God is who he is and whatever he asks us to be, He himself he his and thus, he becomes our role model. Need a role model to emulate, look up to God.
h) He gives us identity in him – Earlier I mentioned that we have children in our generation who lack identity in regards to who their fathers are. You do not have to struggle to know who you are as a Christian. Whether you have a biological father or not, the bible tells us that we are children of God. John 1:12 says “Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God” When we talk of our identity in Christ, I cannot exhaust all the scriptures that define who we are in God. Just to mention but a few: In John 15:15 – God calls us his friends; Ephesians 1:3-8 - I have been chosen by God and adopted as His child; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 - I have been bought with a price and I belong to God; Philippians 3:20 – I am a citizen of heaven; Romans 8:14-15 & Galatians 3:26 - I am a child of God; God is spiritually my Father; Galatians 4:6-7 and Romans 8:17 - am an heir with the Father and a joint heir with Christ. I could go on and on but read the word and get to know more regards your identity in God.
i) God is calling back to himself – In Isaiah 1:18, the bible says “Come now; let us reason together,” Says the LORD”. God is calling us back to himself. We as human beings we have a tendency of forsaking God but He will never forsake us. In the book of Judges, you will realize that the children of Israel had a certain trend. They sinned against God, cried out to him and god came to their rescue. This is not what we are meant to be doing so that God can be there for us, we need to careful of how we relate with him as well.
God wants to lead or influence each of our lives to become like Him. He wants us to reflect His character to those with whom we interact. The legacy you leave will be through the relationships you cultivate. God desires a restored relationship with each of us. From the moment sin entered the world; God has reached out with love to each person ever born. We have broken his heart. Scripture indicates we have turned everyone to his own way. God accepts us right where we are, with our failures, shortcomings, achievements, goals, desires, hang-ups or issues, doubts, misgivings, faith, knowledge. God doesn’t say “I wish you were like brother or sister so and so.” He does not compare us to His other children. He says you are special. God’s family is a wonderful place of community. It is there we have other meaningful relationships as well as the relationship with our father. I pray that we will all get back to that place we know God intimately just the way we would love to know and bond with our biological fathers as He (God) is our Spiritual father.
17“When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! 18I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. 19I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.’ 20So he got up and went to his father. “But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.” Luke 15:17-20
“6 When she heard in Moab that the LORD had come to the aid of his people by providing food for them, Naomi and her daughters-in-law prepared to return home from there.” Ruth 1:6
Sitting down on Sunday morning and listening to a friend of mine share the word of God, she spoke in simplicity and ministered to my heart. She spoke about Being/dwelling in your place of Destiny. I sat down afterwards and examined myself and realized that at some point I had deviated and I had lost track and I wasn’t at my place of destiny. It is amazing how the Lord ministers to us. For the last couple of days, I have been searching myself and asking God to bring me back to my place of destiny. It is not just being in the place of destiny ministry-wise but in all aspects of my life. I know many of us we are at that position. We have reached a point in life and we are asking what is not happening or what went wrong in our lives. We need to arise and go back home – to our place of destiny.
Jesus speaking to the crowds and his disciples, He illustrates how the kingdom of God is through the parable of the lost coin, sheep and then the prodigal son. He speaks of how the son asked for his share of inheritance and went and squandered all of it in riotous living in a far country. Later on we see him starving to a point of eating what the pigs were feeding on. You can imagine the food that you give to a pig and someone is feeding in the same. Thank God the boy came to his senses and decided to go back home. We see Ruth and her mother-in-law Naomi; they left Bethlehem which means the house of bread and went to Moab during the time of famine. While she is there, her husband and two sons died leaving her with two daughters. When she heard that there was no more famine in Bethlehem, she decided to go back home.
You will notice above that I have highlighted the words ‘decided to go back home’ in red. The reason is very simple; as much as you may realize that you have missed a mark in your life and notice that you are headed in the wrong direction, it is up to you to make up your mind and decided whether or not you are going back to the right place where you left. The bible says in Jeremiah 6:16 “Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.” The prodigal son could have decided to continue starving and feeding on what the pigs were feeding on. Naomi could have as well stayed in Moab and built a good foundation and lead a fulfilling life there, but both of them decided that it was time for them to go back home. One thing that you will realize is that when both of them left their dwelling places or home land, life was never the same. The son squandered all he had and he was left with nothing. On the other hand, Naomi also lost all she had (her husband and two sons) and she was left a lonely woman. One this is sure, when you leave the camp of the Lord, you are doomed to lose.
This is what has happened to many of us. We have left the camp of the Lord and thus we have been faced with situations beyond our control and the enemy has fought us and because we are out of the camp, we have no one to fight with us or for us. When you are in the camp, you will sound the alarm when you are attacked and your fellow soldiers will come to your aide. The bible says in Romans 8:31 “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? God will always come to your aid whenever you are where you are supposed to be. One thing that is different with our father and God which is different from man is that God will always welcome you back home and never discriminate you unlike man. When Naomi returned home, the women in Bethlehem asked “Can this be Naomi?” (Ruth 1:19b). You will realize that this was like a mockery in a way but on the contrary, when the father saw his son, he didn’t start asking questions, instead, he ran to meet him and kissed him and welcomed him home (Luke 15:20b). I tell you and believe me or not, God is not waiting to see you get into troubles then start criticizing you; He is a loving father and will always be there for you; to welcome you back home even when you have strayed to the utmost point.
When you are away from home, lack becomes your portion; but when you are at home, you have enough to eat and have more left over for the following day. This is what the son says: ‘How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! Luke 15:17. The bible tells us that when Naomi arrived in Bethlehem, it was time to harvest barley (Ruth 1:22b). The question is “are you ready to go back home? When the son was back home, he was welcomed with a party meaning that there is plenty to even have a celebration. God never lacks. He is Jehovah Jireh our provider. In the wilderness when the children of Israel had nothing to eat, God did provide for them manna that they ate while they were in the camp. If God can do that, why can’t you believe him for the same and stay in the camp or in your place of destiny. Do not leave the camp in pursuit of meeting or supplying your needs when God can do that for you.
When you are from home, you lose your identity. When Naomi returned back to Bethlehem, the women and the residents couldn’t recognize her. She was a changed woman because of what she had gone through. The son wasn’t recognized where he was till the only pace that was fit for him to dwell and eat from was the place where pigs were. Just imagine that degradation. You reach a point where your worth is compared to that of a pig. That’s what the devil does to you. You and I are sons of the most high God but when we are away from home and we lose the fellowship we have with God, so does our identity. The devil will always degrade and disgrace you. You will realize that Naomi said “Don’t call me Naomi,” she told them. “Call me Mara, because the Almighty has made my life very bitter.” Ruth 1:20. The prodigal son also didn’t want to be referred to as a son in the family but he wanted to be made a slave. In Luke 15:21 the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.” There is the lack of your sense of belonging once you are away from home but thanks to God that He always accepts us back.
When you are away from home, you lose your possession and value. This is what Naomi says to the people of Bethlehem: “I went away full, but the LORD has brought me back empty…” Ruth 1:21a. Naomi went to Moab with the whole of his family but she came back alone with one daughter-in-law. The son went to afar land loaded with wealth from his share of inheritance but he squandered everything (Luke 15:13-14). I believe Naomi was esteemed by the residents of Bethlehem before she left but when she returned, she had nothing and thus she couldn’t be placed back to the same position she was before she left Bethlehem. The son had loads of friends whom he squandered his wealth with but the minute his wealth was over, he found himself alone and in want. No one valued him and all he had to do was hire himself out to a resident of that country. The devil will make sure that he has used you till your last strength and then ump you. At this point, you have no value and you can’t amount to anything because you have nothing of your own and you have no value. Stay in the camp and your value will increase day by day.
When you are gone, you have lost your identity, you have lacked and you become tired of being used up with no value being added to your life; return back home. The minute you return home you will be accepted and restored back. When the prodigal son returned home, his father accepted him back home. His father did four things that are so significant.
a) First the father said bring the best robe for him: – this signified the covering of his nudity and shame. When you are out there, your nudity is exposed and you are prone to shame. The devil exposes your weaknesses and you are prone to attacks. But once you are home, you are assured that you will be covered and your shame, weaknesses and nudity will not be seen by everybody.
b) Put a ring on his finger: – This signified restoration of identity and royalty. When the son was out there, he had lost his identity and thus the father had to restore him back as a son. You belong to the royal family. The bible reminds us that we are a royal priesthood, a holy people belonging to God.
c) Put sandals on his feet: – This signified protection. When you do not have shoes and you are walking, you are prone to your feet being pricked and cut by thorns glasses and other objects but once you have your shoes on, you are protected. This is what the Lord does; He protects us from anything that can harm us when we are at home.
d) He held a feast of celebration for the son: – God is always happy when one returns back home. The bible tells us that there is celebration in heaven. This signified acceptance back into the family. When you come back home, no matter how long you have been away, there will always be joy and celebration. It is at this time that you are welcomed back home and accepted.
The question I am asking myself and you this morning is: why linger out there struggling and be in anguish while you can return back home to the father and you will be accepted? I challenge you this morning to come back to your senses and make a decision to come back home. Your father, God is waiting for you to welcome you back and restore to you what the enemy has stolen. Waste no more time, make your way back home and you will be a happy person in your father’s house. You will enjoy abundance, love, warmth, peace and joy that you are missing while you are away from home. Return back home!