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From my Lenten study which you can download for free.  Don’t worry that you’re a few days behind, you can work through it at your own pace. I pray you will be blessed these 40 days.

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Day 4: Give Me What Is Coming to Me
Texts: Psalm 12:1-6, Gen. 3:1-24, Mark 2:1-17 {Luke 15: 11-12}

“And Jesus said, “There was a man who had two sons. And the younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give the the share of the property that is coming to me.’ And he divided his property between them.”

My sister and I split the cost of my Daddy’s funeral.
I was 27 years old with two kids in my 3rd year of medical school when he died. I was on my psychiatry rotation and was beginning to wonder what it would be like when I finally went crazy. (That’s a chapter in my memoir, for what it’s worth.)
Not only was there no inheritance to be had, there was no life insurance either. Right before he got lung cancer and liver failure, we took out an insurance policy on him and kept it for years. Lean financial times, our growing families, and my medical school expenses made it easy to let it lapse. He died the next year and in the midst of the worst heartsickness I ever remember experiencing, we had to deal with the stress of paying for his funeral. Those were dark days—days when you wish you had a father to guide you through the fog.

The commentaries I’ve read on the prodigal son agree that the father in the story of the prodigal son was set to leave quite an inheritance to his sons. He had servants and land and animals, though how much of those things we aren’t told.
But the boys didn’t seem that interested in a relationship with their dad, as much as they wanted what his wealth and status could offer them. In fact, when the younger son asks for his inheritance while his father is alive, he is basically wishing his father dead.
In the Old Testament story for today, Eve is the same way. She grasps for something of her own, some secret wisdom or knowledge that could be gained apart from God, as if He were trying to keep something good from her. It destroyed everything and tore at the fabric of the way God made the world—a world in which He gives us all we need and we receive His gifts in thankfulness.
But we don’t do that, do we. At least I don’t.

I think I know better what I need than He does, so I strive and grasp and want and long. For a better everything. A better life, a nicer house, a richer marriage, a shinier car, a bigger bank account, more influence, and on and on until the sick cycle of my wanting becomes an addiction to everything I don’t need. This life He gave me, the one I actually live in, never seems like enough.

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So I set out, just like the prodigal son and just like Eve. In search of something to call my own. It probably plays out the same in your life, too. We haven’t so much broken our Father’s commandments as we’ve broken His heart.*
All He ever wanted was to give us everything.
In the Gospel lesson, as always, Jesus rescues us, reminding us that only those who are sick need a physician—those who are sick in their sin and despair, those who are sick in their pride and self-sufficiency, those for whom enough is never enough.
So we’re in good company when we find ourselves barred from Eden, in the far country of the pig pen, sifting through the broken parts of everything we’ve snatched for ourselves. Jesus came to open back the gates to heaven, to restore us to Eden, to find us wallowing in our own selfish mire and bring us back home to our Father.

And there, He will make the lame walk and the blind see. He will set about with a feast for us prodigals like you’ve never seen. He will finally gift us with our full inheritance, and we will weep to know that the *gift* he always wanted to give us was Himself.

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If you know anyone who would benefit from this study of God’s love, share this post!

I will also be reading through Grace Upon Grace during Lent and discussing it once a week on Pericope. This book is AMAZING.

2 comments on “Daddy’s Funeral & My Inheritance”

  1. Please keep writing! Your words speak straight to my soul and send me pressing into Jesus….can’t wait to read you memoir!

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