Finding Life in the Right Place

Here are five things that will help us to find life in the right places.

1. Living our own way takes us away from God. 

God has good things in store for us. The plan of the father for the son is that the son would inherit a third of his estate, he would live in the security, the comfort, the blessing of being in the father’s house. However, the father’s plan and the son’s plan weren’t aligned. God has got a good plan for our lives, a plan to prosper us and not to harm us, a plan to lead us into eternal life, a plan to be with us, a plan to bless us, a plan to heal all the hurts and to wipe away every tear. However, we want that now, and we think we know how to get it. We want control. We have this idea that we know what’s best for us. We want to decide what our destiny is all about and so what do we do? We live for power. We live for significance. We live for fame, we live for relationships, we live for money. All of those things can be good things when they’re in their proper place. They make great servants but terrible masters.. As soon as we pursue those things, we are drawn away from the Father. All the things we really want we find in the Father’s presence. 

2. Distance from life brings death

The source of the son’s blessing and enjoyment of life all came from being in the Father’s presence. He had to work hard, but he was working for his future estate. He was working for future promises. Everything that he was working for, was bringing great fruit in his life. However, he left the security of the Father’s house, and squandered everything he had. He ended up starving in a pigsty. 

When we leave the Father’s house, we think we know where we’re going, but it’s like a mirage in the desert we’re aiming for, but when we get there, we’ve spent all we have, and it’s just sand. We get to the end and it’s not actually where we wanted to be. The enemy has got a plan for your life. It’s one to rob you of every good relationship that you have, to rob you of peace, to rob you of joy, to fill you with anxiety. But the plan of Jesus is to bring you an abundant life (John 10:10), a full, exuberant, a joyful life that can’t be contained. It’s a life that is so full. It’s so blessed. It’s so healthy.

Now what I’m not saying is that everything’s going to look shiny in your life. When you have life, it’s inside life that overflows as the Scriptures say, “there will be rivers of living water that flows out of you”. You can go through bad seasons and still be full of life. 

3. Repentance returns us to God

The son has hit the lowest point of his life. It says he came to his senses. He realized what he lost. He realized the goodness of his father’s house, that even the servants were being treated better than what he was experiencing. He had this revelation that he was lost. He wanted to return to his father’s house even as a servant, because there he would have a better life.

That’s what repentance looks like. God, I’m sorry for my sin, for where I am now. I want to return to You. Life is awaiting you when you repent. Repentance means to change your direction. A 180 degree turn. You’re always invited to return to life. There can be no life in God if there is no repentance of sin.

We all fall short of the glory of God and are in desperate need of forgiveness for us (Romans 3:23). 

4. God's love covers you

The son walks back home, and the father has been looking out for him the whole time. While he is still far away, he sees him coming on the horizon, and starts running towards him. 

Do you think the son took a shower? Do you think he went for a spa treatment before coming back home? Do you think he dealt with the pig’s smell? Do you think he shampooed his hair? No, his son came home disheveled, a messy beard, smelling like pigs, mud stains on his clothing. He probably looked like a skeleton because he hadn’t been eating much. Yet, his father embraced him fully. He hugs him, kisses him, rejoices over him, and doesn’t even have time to hear about all the apologies and repentance. He puts a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet, and then he covers him with a clean robe. He walks into the house covered. The son is reminded along with all the people that he is restored to the position he had before. 

Your Heavenly Father wants to cover you with his love, with compassion, with blessing, with a coat that says you are a son or daughter of God. Sin, shame and guilt removed. You’re not a servant. You’re not a slave. You’re not a foreigner. You’re family! 

5. Don’t be like the older brother

There is an older brother in the story who never left home. He worked hard for his father. You can be in the Father’s house without being close to the Father. The older brother was upset. He did so much and didn’t get the recognition he wanted. As the father went to the son who ran away, the father went out to the brother who never left. 

This parable is about lostness. Lostness is where your heart is in comparison to the Father’s heart for you? 

God’s heart for lost people is love and wanting them to return. A good question to ask yourself is, how far is my heart from God today? And can I come back to Him? 

God doesn’t want to condemn you today. He wants to receive you today (John 3:16-17). Judgment is coming. That’s why repentance is necessary. But the heart of repentance is to draw near to God. He is holding back judgment so that everybody would have an opportunity to turn to Christ. The invitation is the same for us all. 

The journey that we’re going on as Revive Church is really to call people back to life and to find life in Jesus.

And in finding life, you will also be able to fulfill God’s purpose for your life. 

Article by

Sven Steffens

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