2021-12-19 Coming Home for Christmas – Pastor Chuck
Coming Home for Christmas – Pastor Chuck
The Father’s thoughts towards us outnumber the sands of the seashore!! How’s that for a thought of Biblical Proportions!
Luke 15 – the story of the Prodigal son – 22 Verses – one of Jesus’ longest parables
Could also be called: “The Two Lost Sons” or “The Loving Father”
There is a huge difference between “religion” and a “relationship” – One of Jesus’ main reasons for sharing this story was to show us the difference and what kind of relationship the Father wants with us!
Jesus came so that we could have a relationship with our Heavenly Father
v17 – When he (the prodigal son) came to his senses… He thought of home
Really enjoy Christmas movies because many, if not most, of them, have an element of “Coming Home”!
There always seems to be a shift to where they hear home calling, or they head home
Rip Van Winkle – fell asleep for 20 years & wakes up to a very different world
The prodigal son came to a place in his life (woke up!) and things were very different than even he expected, and he thought about home
– Folks always seem to blame God, even though He is never really at fault (who does their own thing, ignores God, or even denys His existence?!)
Jesus came to give us the embrace of the Father that He is always ready to give, even to His prodigal children!
There are 3 things we can be sure of (4 things that are too important we don’t want to miss)
1 – we will suffer persecution – (eg North Korea) 2 Tim 2:11
2 – We will be asked to do very difficult things – Psalm 110:3 Your people will be willing on the day of battle
Don’t automatically say “no” when an opportunity arises! Say “Yes” to the small things the Holy Spirit prompts you to (remember the 10-second rule!)
St Ignatius lived in a perpetual attitude of having one foot raised, to always be ready to step into an opportunity as the Holy Spirit led!
3 – We will never walk alone – we have Emmanuel – “God with us” – literally with us! Wow!
4 – There’s something important we don’t want to miss! – An awakening to what the Lord is doing!
Awakening – to what the Lord is doing
Eg. John Wesley – experienced God coming to Him! – We are spiritual beings – Was like a Homecoming to Him!
Reading Scripture gives us God’s heart – its a Homecoming, a coming home to Him!!
eg: in the 70’s there was a massive Homecoming to Him – The Jesus revolution!
In Buenos Aires, Argentina – even little children were being touched powerfully by the Holy Spirit!
John Wimber – when he came to Jesus – he later wrote about it – said it was like coming home! “I remember You! I knew You as a little child!”
Gospel – good news of Jesus Christ
The true most wonderful news!
In the 1730’s the churches had grown cold
Jonathan Edwards & George Witfield – were called & mightily used by the Lord
1) started to preach repentance
2) called to have a witness with the Holy Spirit with our spirit
Whole families were being changed by the power of God, whole villages & whole towns were coming in repentance & were being saved by the power of God!
Video Clip: Leeland: An Intro to “The Great Awakening” – YouTube
When Chuck finally asked Val’s dad for permission to marry her, her dad said “Bring her home often!” (Home coming is sweet!)
Know how much the Lord loves you and wants you to come home to Him!!
John 3:16 – For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.
What awaited the son when he (finally!) came home?:
An open, loving embrace and forgiveness from his Father!!
A wonderful robe
A ring of honour for his finger
A fattened calf for a feast in his honour!
Hark the Harold Angels sing! – describes his story!
Coming home for Christmas
Many people talk about the last days, as being these days
2 Peter 3 – a day is like a 1000 years to the Lord…
He is patient with you! ….
What kind of people ought you to be?…
Make every effort to be spotless….
He can give you peace today!! Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience is for our benefit – for our salvation!
Watch out for God’s mighty move in the Spirit in another Great Awakening!
Roman 8:14 – contains our invitation to come home for Christmas!!
There were really two lost sons in the story of the prodigal son… are you one?
In either case **come home** in humility, and experience the love of your Heavenly Father’s embrace!