Frank was tired of working in the family business, and he couldn’t wait to get out of it. He had already spoken to his father, who owned the business. Dear old Dad had given him half-ownership of the company.
Now Frank had made all his plans, so he smugly picked up the phone and called his buddy Aaron, who lived in another city.
“You said I could never do it, but I got the money out of my old man. Let’s go celebrate tonight–my treat!”
“Sounds good to me! You know they’re always raising the rent around here. Maybe I can finally have a decent meal. But I can’t believe it–my friend and fellow pauper is now king of the hill!”
He wanted to go on, but Frank cut him off. “Just stick with me, and be ready about seven.”
After hanging up, Frank began whistling to himself as he thought about the fun night before him. Today would be busy, however, as Frank needed to execute his plans.
Once he had cashed out the stocks and bonds his father had given him, Frank would be a rich man. So it was beyond him why his father kept this headake he didn’t need. But the family business wasn’t his concern any longer. He was a free man, with money to burn.
Frank’s thoughts turned to his friend, who had adamantly said he didn’t have to remain tied down to his family business any longer. And wasn’t it his friend who had stayed up and role-played, pretending to be Frank’s father and objecting to Frank’s demands? How could Frank repay a dear friend like that?
Then, having a flash of insight, Frank chuckled to himself. Of course, one of Aaron’s main fascinations had always been travel. Wasn’t that how the pair had become acquainted? Neither one could get enough of other cultures or exotic countries, and they shared new photos and articles incessantly on Facebook. At the travel club, there were always interesting lectures about some foreign place or other. However, all they could do until today was fantasize.
So, being the nice guy that he was, Frank decided he would loan Aaron the money to travel. But after finishing his daily errands and looking at his bank account, he asked himself what on Earth he had been thinking.
“Forget loaning Aaron the money. I’ll surprise him!” Frank declared.
At just the right moment, Frank made an announcement during dinner. “We are going on the cruise of our lives, with all the amenities!”
Imagining this scenario, Frank smiled to himself. He waved away his friend’s protests by saying, “It’s the least I can do. My mind is made up, so you might as well get ready to enjoy plenty of babes and all the champagne you can drink!”
If this story sounds familiar, that’s because it is. It’s paraphrased from the lips of Jesus, the greatest storyteller of all time.
The parable of the Prodigal Son is often cited as an example of God’s grace. This is certainly true, but there is much more to the story than that.
We won’t go into this tale today, but I would like to take the road less traveled. Scripture tells us this road will lead us to revival, the road of humility.
Notice that there’s no real ending to our opening story. That is because I want each of us to put our own ending on it. In other words, I don’t want this to be just another blog entry that we read and forget. Instead, I hope this entry will inspire us to ask God to search our hearts as we travel down the road of life.
You see, each of us has a unique story to tell about how God may have allowed us to travel a certain road, which brought us to heartache and the end of ourselves. This may have been brought about by our own stupidity, grief as we faced a loss, or just through other circumstances. I won’t go into my own circumstances here, but God had to use both pain and suffering in my case.
Now I can hear somebody say, “That isn’t true! God is a God of healing.”
Yes, you are correct. Certainly, David’s God healed, but isn’t your God big enough to do both?
Look at these two scriptures with me. First, Psalm 103:2-3 says, “Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits– who forgives all your sins, and heals all your diseases …” (NIV)
This looks fine and dandy, until we get to Psalm 119:71: “It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees.” (NIV)
Whether God chooses to heal us down here or up there, we need to ask for His will as Jesus did, living our lives to glorify Him.
Therefore, my friend, I ask you: What road are you traveling on? Is it the road to revival, or are you on another path? If you find you’re not on the right road, open your heart to the God of the Bible who welcomes you. Instead of listening to the voices of condemnation, humble yourself in the childlike humility that Jesus spoke about. Then ask Him to fill you with His Spirit, as He guides you through the rest of the day. I pray that you’ll allow Him to be your guide through the rest of your life, as you travel the road to revival.
Thank you for reading this, and may the Lord give you a wonderful week! We are trying to reach people who are hurting, so if God lays it on your heart, please consider becoming a partner with us. If you would like to make a donation, please visit www.hcmachaplains.org and click on the Donate Now link. You can also send donations by mail to HCMA (Healthcare Chaplains Ministry Association). Our ID number is 560. The address is 101 S Kraemer BLVD, Suite 123A, Placentia, CA 92870.
Finally, you’re always welcome to join our Tuesday night Bible study. These studies are conducted by conference call, and they take place at 6:30 PM Arizona time. Our conference number is 313-209-8800. Our PIN is 8699032. We hope to talk with you soon!
If you have questions, comments or prayer requests for Timothy or Stephanie Burdick, please call 507-369-6861.