This week, my Bible study has been in Luke 15. Lots of parables there. And I love the stories of Jesus pursuing the one lost sheep and running to meet the estranged, prodigal son--as long as I see myself as that sheep or son.
But most of the time I don't. I see myself as one of those 99 sheep left alone or the older brother working while party preparations were being made for his disrespectful little brother.
I'm steady and faithful. Not exciting. Not overly fun. Not really rebellious (even though I don't always follow the rules). I'm the person you ask to remind you to do something. I'm the one who offers to feed your dogs when you are out of town.
And lots of times, I feel like I am one in the middle of many. One that God does not need to worry about so I'm lost in the midst of the ones we do need to be concerned about. Insignificant. Small. Forgotten.
I have so much of the big brother in me that its scary. Can you imagine what was going through his mind? His little brother runs off--leaving him with more work and probably putting the family in financial stress since his dad gave him his part of all he had. Then, after busting his tail in the field all day, he comes home and finds out that his father has given his punk-brother a robe and ring and instead of working, everyone has stopped to prepare for a party. For the least deserving person. The person who could care less about all that he--the big brother--had struggled to keep from losing the whole time his brother was partying.
I want a story like that lost sheep and little brother without going through getting lost/hitting rock
bottom. I want to be so grateful for what God has brought me through without having to go through
anything hard. I want to feel as loved as that sheep and little brother did. I want to not be angry or disappointed for feeling jealous.
But then, maybe in that cynicism and guilt, I AM the one, the little brother.