"Over the last few weeks we've been living in the parable of the Prodigal Son that's found in Luke 15. We're in our last message of this series that we've been doing. Remember, a parable literally means 'to throw alongside of.' In this parable, it's Jesus taking the story of a father and his two sons and he throws it alongside of the reality of the world we live in and the kingdom that Jesus came to inaugurate. We said earlier that a parable presents a picture for us to climb up inside of and explore. For us to ask questions about ourselves and about God. It's a way for us to ask the question are we living in the way that Jesus created us to live and designed us live? Are there maybe some things that God would press on us to say, "You've pictured me in one way, but I'm different than you've ever imagined?" Over the last four weeks, we've been exploring this through the angle of the younger son...."
"Certainly we can relate to the feeling of pursuing freedom and finding ourself in cages. That song (Cages) by NeedtoBreathe poignantly points that picture of the place we often find ourselves in. It's the place that the prodigal son found himself in. He believed he was on the pathway to freedom, but he found that he was actually on his way to confinement. We're going to pick up that story again today. If you have your Bible, turn with me to Luke 15..."
We have all of the DNA of freedom, yet we often find ourselves in confinement. Everything in us cries out that we were designed for something more and something bigger and something better, and yet, we look at our lives sometimes, and our lives defined by a fear that we can't get over, a guilt that we can't shake free of, and a despair that seems so prevalent that it defines our everyday reality. We look at ourselves, we look at our own hearts and our own souls and the desire is in us to go, yeah, I was made for freedom. All of us know it. It's a transcendent, human reality. We know that we were designed for freedom and yet, we also know that there's things in our life that keep us enslaved. There's things in our life that confine us. There's even decisions that we've made that turn that more and more into a reality....
"I always get excited about a new series beginning and this one is no different. As I've had the chance to study over the last few weeks and look through, hopefully a fresh lens, the story of the Prodigal from Luke 15, it's once again captured my heart and reminded me of the story that we find ourselves in as human beings. Specifically, and uniquely, as followers of the way of Jesus. My hope is that over the next six weeks this story would be an invitation to you back into the greatest story ever told. Sometimes we need that invitation and we need that reigniting of our faith, so when we sing "awaken my soul," it's not because we've never been awake before, it's because sometimes we get caught in the monotony of life, don't we? And the every day. And the pain and the hurt. Sometimes we need that invitation from God. That's my intention and hope over the next six weeks...."
As we continue our series on Proverbs, this sermon was on generousity, drawn from multiple texts in the book of Proverbs.