In St. Luke
the fifteenth chapter,
A beautiful story is told.
It's one of love and compassion.
Please listen as the story unfolds.
A certain man had two sons.
They were his pride and joy.
He loved them both equally.
He made no difference between his boys.
One day the youngest son said to his father,
"I want to run wild and free."
"Father, give me the portion of goods,
That falleth to me."
He wanted to enjoy sin's pleasure.
Father's ways were much too straight.
So he gathered his possessions together,
And headed out the gate.
He went to a far away country.
Perhaps his friends came along.
He wasted all his substance,
On wine, women, and song.
There arose a great famine in the land,
And all his money was spent.
He became a vagabond and destitute.
So down to the hog pen he went.
He was so desperate by this time,
That he found a job feeding swine.
He desired the husks that the hogs did eat.
But, then sweet memories came to mind.
Why even the hired servants of his father,
Had more than enough to eat.
He was so weak and hungry,
But he struggled to his feet.
The distance back home was great,
But he started on his way.
He rehearsed over and over again,
Exactly what he would say.
It seemed that the miles back to Father's house,
Were longer than before.
But finally he rounded that last bend,
And home was in sight once more.
Father looked down the road once more,
And made his daily check.
He saw a familiar figure and ran and hugged,
The prodigal's neck.
The prodigal son said,
"Father, I've sinned against Heaven and thee."
"I'm no longer worthy to be called thy son."
"Just let me your servant be."
His father said,
"Son, I've spent many sleepless nights,"
"Praying on your behalf."
Then he turned to his hired servants and said,
"Go kill the fatted calf."
"Bring hither a pair of shoes for him,"
"A ring and a robe to wear."
"The great God Jehovah,
"Has answered this father's prayer."
"While my son was away from home,"
"I felt that I had cause to worry."
"But he that was dead is alive once more."
"Let's eat and make merry."
"This my son was lost,"
"But praise God he now is found."
Friend, I believe his father,
Was standing on "shoutin' ground!"
Ah, but there was a "fly in the ointment."
For the elder brother was in the field.
He heard music and dancing.
The old home place of late had been still.
He called one of the servants and said,
"What is this sound upon my ears?"
The servant said, "Why man we're rejoicing."
"You're younger brother is here!"
"Thy father has killed the fatted calf."
"Look there is plenty to eat."
"Aren't you excited?"
"Come in and take thy seat."
But the elder brother would not go in.
He stayed on the outside to pout.
The father saw him standing there,
And went to see what it was all about.
He said, "Father,"
"I have served you many years."
"See how good I have been."
"Yet, you never gavest me a kid,"
"That I might make merry with my friends."
"But now that thy prodigal son has come,"
"It's eat, drink, and be merry."
The father said, "Son, all I have is thine."
"Please don't be contrary."
"Let's rejoice together."
"Thy brother was lost but now he is found!"
"He was dead but now he's alive."
"Come on in and sit down."
Friend, sometime we're like the elder brother.
We're full of jealousy.
But we should be full of peace,
And love and not self righteous be.
If our brother has fallen,
We must lend him a helping hand.
This is the only kind of spirit,
That will get us into "Canaan's Land."
Robert F. Dotson © 2007