The Other Brother…
Recently, someone was sharing with me about issues of jealousy he had struggled with over the years. Much like me, he had been adopted as an infant, and that experience, amidst others, had left a gaping whole. This dear friend had spent years of his life trying to earn favor that seemed to just flow naturally to others… even when others didn’t seem to deserve it.
You see… abandonment breeds an ‘orphan spirit.’ It is very difficult for someone who has experienced this sort of rejection to fully receive
love from others, as well as from our Heavenly Father, without wondering when the ball is going to drop. They are always left questioning if a person REALLY loves them—which often leads to the self-sabotage tactic of rejecting first, so as not to be the one left rejected.
So, when this friend shared what the Lord was doing in his heart in relation to jealousy, I was not at all surprised. I, too, have grappled with these things… haven’t we all?
Thankfully, we serve a loving Heavenly Father who completely understands the delicate places in our hearts, as He continues to remove layers of unresolved pain from our past. Quite often during this process, we are exposed in ways we’ve never allowed before, and it can be painful.
As my friend continued to share about his struggle to understand the relationship to see himself as a son rather than a slave, I interceded quietly on his behalf. As he complained about how new Believers oftentimes receive accolades and honor that he had desperately desired for himself, after years of dedicated service, my heart broke.
Several minutes into this conversation the Lord gently nudged him, and he looked up at me in surprise… “I am like the OTHER son in the story of the prodigal! I am the one who never left and my Father is saying, all that I have has ALWAYS been yours!”
Sometimes, as Believers, we don’t recognize that the very thing we desire is already ours. The honor of putting our feet under the Father’s table on a daily basis can oftentimes be taken for granted. We can forget that we have been chosen and personally invited to His table. We can also forget that the bounty we have been so accustomed to is ours without the asking. However, our own personal fear of lack can stand in the way of celebrating the return of our prodigal brothers and sisters when our Father chooses to give them a place of honor, regardless of their previous behavior.
I want to encourage you today, to take an appraisal of your life. Are you standing in the abundance of the wheat field of your Father’s house… and don’t even realize it? Have you been struggling to impress your Heavenly Father in order to obtain His favor? Do you refuse to receive His love freely, without feeling as though you must perform in order to receive it? If so, be encouraged, this word is for you!
When Jesus died on the cross, He chose to pay the price for EVERYONE’S sin. It was a grueling and disturbing way to die. Jesus was perfectly God, and perfectly man. He knew no sin and He had GREAT compassion for everyone He met. When He issued those words “Father! Father! Why have you forsaken Me?” He was literally experiencing the heartache of abandonment on such a visceral level that He sweat drops of blood. As He died, that very blood that He shed removed EVERY barrier that stood in humanities way of truly entering into the Father’s presence as a son and daughter of the King. The question is… Was that sacrifice enough?
When we choose to become Believers, no matter the circumstances of our past, we are adopted into the Kingdom of God. We become covenant sons and daughters of the Most High God. It is ours whether we choose to believe it, or not. We can spend years of our lives toiling in the fields of our Father, never fully realizing who we are, or we can accept the work of the cross as payment enough. We can recognize that the Lord must be a good Father because He sent His one and only Son on our behalf, and on the behalf of others, so that we can all be a part of His family.
As you begin this Jubilee year, it is my hearts prayer, that you, like my friend, can come into the full revelation of WHO YOU ARE IN CHRIST. And although there may be times of pruning in your life where it seems you’ve been passed over, God truly has good plans for you. Take every thought captive and ask forgiveness for being frustrated. God WILL open doors in His timing, and when HE does, NO MAN can shut them.