Who is God to You?
by Katherine J. Kehler Share page


Father, give me my share of the estate” (Luke 15:12)

I love to read books by the author Henry Nouwen. Though he was a highly educated man, he maintained a childlike relationship with the Lord. One of his books, The Return of the Prodigal Son, has some fresh insights into this parable that I had not considered.

As you know, this parable is all about our relationship with God our Father. In essence, the lost son told his father, “I don’t want you, just the things you can give me.”

Although I had habitually viewed the prodigal as someone who had turned his back on God and didn’t come back for many years, Henri Nouwen brings out the fact that all of us can become prodigals many times a day. Whenever we choose to use God only as an “answer to prayer” dispenser or if we remember Him in times of crisis only, we are like the prodigal son. We choose his gifts rather than Him.

When I stop to think about it, I feel so ashamed because I have done that and still do at times.

The good news is that no matter how often we turn away from God and focus on his resources rather than on Him, He is always there, waiting for us with outstretched arms. We are always welcome to come back and bask in His love.

Father, I cannot comprehend Your awesome love and Your total acceptance of Your children. We aren’t like that. Give us the grace to bask in Your love and return Your love. Amen


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