CITY CHURCH MARLBOROUGH
THE FATHERS LOVE
November 8, 2020

THE FATHERS LOVE

November 8, 2020

Message Big Idea: When we find our way back to God, we will discover our identity as a deeply loved, unconditionally accepted child of God.

Scripture: Luke 15:11-24 

We have come home. Finding your way back to God is a life-changing moment, but it’s also a life-growing process, and just because we’re home doesn’t’ mean that everything is magically “fixed.” 

Sometimes, even after we’ve come home, we forget who we are…we lose our identity. 

Word: Luke 15:21-24 

Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.“ (Luke 15:21)

Even after seeing his father run after him with mercy and compassion.

Even after being embraced and bombarded with hugs and kisses. 

Even after all these unmistakable signs of the father’s love and grace,

The son’s opinion of himself doesn’t catch up with his new reality – his new identity.

keeps us from embracing our true identity.

Ring, Robe, Sandals

While the son was still shaking his head in shame, insisting, “I am no longer worthy to be your son,” the father shouts to his servants: 

“Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet.” (Luke 15:22)

1) The robe was a symbol of

The father doesn’t give him an old robe or an extra robe he has in the closet. He gives his son his own robe. 

How would it feel to be enveloped by your Father’s robe

2) The ring was a symbol of

The giving of the ring transfers from the father to the son all of his power and authority. 

The ring sealed his identity and brought him tremendous security.

3) The sandals were a symbol of

In an ancient Jewish home, the only people who would wear sandals in the house were the homeowners. Slaves and servants went barefoot. 

Define yourself radically as one beloved by God. This is the true self. Every other identity is illusion. God’s love for you and his choice of you constitute your worth. Accept that, and let it become the most important thing in your life.”  -Brennan Manning, Abba’s Child

A New Identity

My hope is that when we are done today, every one of us will walk confidently in the truth of our new identity.

  • Remember the Robe? You don’t need to prove yourself anymore. You can rest and know that you are home! 
  • Remember the Ring? You don’t have to worry anymore. He promises to never leave you. 
  • Remember the Sandals? You don’t have to feel alone anymore. You are unconditionally loved and you are home!

“Every time you feel hurt, offended, or rejected, you have to dare to say to yourself: ‘These feelings, strong as they may be, are not telling me the truth about myself. The truth, even though I cannot feel it right now, is that I am the chosen child of God, precious in God’s eyes, called the Beloved from all eternity, and held safe in an everlasting belief.’” –Henri Nouwen, Life of the Beloved

 

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