Yesterday, my family and I visited the newly renovated Speed Art Museum on the campus of the University of Louisville. It is free on Sundays for the next five years. I was amazed by the art. My children were with me, an hour was enough time for them. My husband and I will go back one Sunday for a date. We could spend hours reading all the information explaining each piece. I was struck by this statue the Prodigal Son. I should have taken a picture of the information but I forgot.
The prodigal son is the parable that Jesus told about the son who squandered his inheritance on a pleasure driven life and when he hit rock bottom, eating with the swines he cared for, he decided to go home and ask for forgiveness. Upon returning home his Father spotted him on the road and made preparations to celebrate his homecoming. His father did not think about the sins of his son, condemn him, or lecture him, he just hugged him and loved him back into his life. The precious unconditional love of a parent for a child is matched only by the love that God has for each one of his own creations. As parents of course it is our responsibility to raise them with good morals, values, and love for others. However, if our children left us and entered a world like the prodigal son and then decided to come back I don’t think the first words from the parents would be condemning words. As a mom I think the first action would be hugs of love, and tears of happiness that my child has returned to me. Jesus was trying to explain how much God loves each of us. That God would run down the street to greet us, he would hug the sinner, and be elated that he or she decided of his or her own free will to return to God. When I look closely at the face of the father I see relief and unconditional love. What do you see?