Now and again you hear a story that seems too perfect to believe.   However, the element of truth springs forward in your thinking like an athlete on a trampoline.

This one came from a group of guys, sitting around a fire, eating their lunch.  “Last night my son and I were in a heated discussion.  He left and ascended the staircase only to return shortly with suitcase in hand.  ‘Dad, I am leaving this house.  I cannot live here under your orders.  Goodbye!’”

The heart-broken father looked his son in the eye and said: “Take off your jacket and leave it.  I paid for it.”  The process continued as the father made claim to the suitcase and clothing.  Finally, the young man looked at his father and said: “Dad, you are hopeless!”  With that, he gathered everything and ascended the steps to his room.

With so many young people returning to live with their parents, one has to wonder if they ever intend to become sufficiently mature to accept the responsibilities that accompany adult status.  Just who was “hopeless” in the a-fore mentioned story?

My thinking spins to the story of the prodigal son in Luke 15.  He had everything he needed or even in that economy, deserved.  Yet his greed sent him on the downward path.  The heavy-hearted Father could have said: “You are on your own!”  Instead he gives him his portion and waits patiently!

The story of the young man is spelled out for us as he heads to the “slop kettle”.  He is finally humbled!  The young man squandered it all… and left destitute he heads home, content to become a laborer under his father.

Meanwhile, back home, obviously the father is ever waiting; eyes glued on the horizon.  The question is not “if”, but “when” will the young man return.  From the reaction of the other son, there is little question in my mind that the subject was ever discussed.

There is rejoicing, great rejoicing, at the young man’s return.  Few are those who understand the individual’s turmoil in such a situation.  The most exciting thing possible has taken place.  The other son does not fully comprehend the moment!  Mixed emotions are present as to what the future holds; but at that moment, what matters is the Father is saying: “My son has returned!” May I put it in perspective:  My son walked up the staircase!

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