BelovedLittle did I know that Pastor Sean’s sermon would play into the Lent Photo Challenge.  The word today?  Beloved.  The sermon topic?  The Prodigal Son.  At right is a detail from a painting, The Prodigal Son Returns, by Soichi Watanabe.

About once a month, Pastor Sean delivers a sermon accompanied by a slide show.  He used this image as one of the slides.

The good news for all of us is that God loves us in the same way that the Father loved the Prodigal Son.

The son asked his father for his inheritance.  He wanted to have access to it even before his father died and it wasn’t because he had a business opportunity.  He squandered it on wine and women.  When his money was gone, a famine struck the land and he had to take a job feeding another man’s pigs.  When he realized that he envied the pigs their supper, he decided to return home.

Before he could even ask to be taken in, the Father ran out to greet him.

That is how God loves us.  We cannot earn this love.  We often squander his gifts to us.  Yet, he rejoices when we draw near. We are truly beloved.