Today’s Scripture: And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants. Luke 15:17-19

Several years ago, I heard my dad, Dr. James Scudder, Sr., preach a message on the prodigal son. In my Bible, I have a note from that sermon: “The prodigal son had to get to the POTD – the point of total desperation.” The prodigal son came to himself because he was indeed at this point of total desperation. When you are at this point, it doesn’t matter why you come to your senses, as long as you do come to your senses.

The prodigal son prepared a speech. He was hoping he would be allowed back, even if just as a servant of his father. He knew he was wrong. He came to a proper understanding of what he had done and was willing to go back and make it right.

There had been no communication to this point. The father didn’t send a servant to go get him. But this whole time, the father was watching and waiting.  Day after day, watching, waiting, praying for the return of his son. He wanted his son to come back. Verse 20 says “…when he was a great way off…”

The father ran to him. That is the love of the Heavenly Father. He can’t wait to be back in fellowship with you. There is nothing more important to Him than that. Running wasn’t dignified. That wasn’t what a wealthy landowner would do. He could afford to pay people to run for him. He was a cultured, wealthy man. But when he saw his son, he didn’t care about what people thought; he ran. He saw his son coming and had compassion.

They were now back in fellowship because the wayward son had returned. Their relationship had been restored.

This is a story that God told about Himself, about the great compassion that He has on those who are lost. In this story, we see compassion. We don’t see someone with a lightning bolt. The father took a stand and did what was right. He didn’t help his son and aid him in his debauchery, but he waited for him. He had compassion on him and ran to meet him. That’s the compassion of the Heavenly Father.

Devotional by Jim Scudder, Jr.