As a father drives his son to the airport, he is deep in thought he thinks of what his son could have become, all the possibilities and options. A lawyer, doctor, the opportunities he had that were passed over. His son riding in the passenger seat in thought as well. There is a sense of adventure in his demeanor a look of excitement on his face about his journey ahead. Memories of where he has been go through his mind, a childlike grin on his face, he thinks of where he is at that very moment and the possibilities of what can be in where he is going. He enthusiastically invites his father to join him, “come with me dad join me.” As if the son already knows of the fulfillment of his journey. His father glances over at him and asks “when are you going to settle down?” There is a tone of disappointment of his son’s life choices. The father ponders his son’s frivolity of life, and wonders if he’ll ever get it, seeing his son as lost. The son’s expression changes and he realizes the magnitude of his father’s disappointment in him. The son realizes his father refuses to see him for him, the person he really is, nor to understand his choices. The father wrapped up in his own world and career blinded by his own life that he has chosen that he has failed to see his son, understand him, learn more about him to fully comprehend his son now a man experiencing life. The son reminds his father, that life is short, that it is not chosen, but lived and more importantly experienced. As they depart, the father returns to his normal daily routine and his son goes on to his journey, continuing his pilgrimage. The father with some certainty probably wonders why his son has chosen to seemingly abandon the “real world”, one of comforts for all the efforts one can put into for a career, one of financial stability settling down to have a family and be an “adult”. The son also with certainty wonders why his father refuses to live life, and only chooses to survive it. The father, seeing life as a sponge and how much he could soak up from it, the son seeing it as a sponge and how much he could wring out of it. This scene taken from the movie “The Way,” a powerful movie about a father whose misunderstanding of his son’s life choices comes to realize what his son had been trying to share with him about the journey his son called “Life.” A father whose own pilgrimage begins with an almost vendetta like intention combined with a homage ends in deliverance. He comes to understand the truth and its’ fulfillment seeing that it is never too late.
Can you picture yourself as a character in this movie? Are you the father? Have you become narrow minded closed to what is around you absorbed by your own life? Has your life consumed you to the point where you are so busy making a life, that you’ve forgotten to live it? Have you climbed the corporate ladder only to find you are there alone, you’re family tired and worn following in the background? Has Sunday golf taken the place of Sunday sermons? Has your faith fallen, victim to self reliance?
Can you picture yourself as the son? Someone unaccepted for choices that are purposeful for your life but misunderstood by those who care and love you. Have you fallen away from faith because you could not convince others?
Maybe you have abandoned your faith in fear of being judged unfairly because maybe your choices were in fact poor ones and now redemption and forgiveness is painful to even consider?
The message of hope today is that it is never too late. No matter where you are in your life, no matter whether choices you have made have been good or bad. No matter what you have done to climb the ladder of “success.” Misunderstood or not, given up or intentionally abandoned, it is NEVER TOO LATE. The Bible teaches us of the story of the lost son. In the book of Luke 15:11, Jesus tells us the story of a son who one day requested from his father the inheritance that was to be his. In this parable the son leaves home in search of a worldly life, falls prey to the sinful nature and desires that dwell within each of us. The father possibly feeling disappointed and hurt seemingly tries to understand his son’s decision, possibly thinking, did I not raise him correct, where did I go wrong, how could he leave his faith behind? His son, self absorbed with what he wants out of life in the end becomes down trodden, penniless, homeless, ashamed and ultimately broken. With nowhere to go he decides to return to his father. The father welcomes him home with open arms, realizing that his prayers were answered and that it was never too late for him to come home. The son realizing that it was never too late to come home and that his father had never stopped waiting or praying for him and more importantly never stopped loving him. This is exactly how our Heavenly Father reacts to us, no matter what our circumstances are He never stops waiting on us, He never gives up on us and never forsakes us for choices we have made. When was the last time you went to your Heavenly Father? Come to Him today, seek forgiveness and accept Him as your Lord and Savior He is waiting with open arms just as the father in the parable. For we were once lost and now are found.
Just as the thief on the cross who hung next to Jesus as He was crucified acknowledged that Jesus was the Christ asked for Jesus’ forgiveness and accepted Jesus as his Lord and Savior. At that very moment the thief realized the sin in his life, and the saving redemptive grace that God gives through Jesus who when they truly repent and seek forgiveness are saved and at that very moment he realized who He was. What was Jesus’ response? “Assuredly I say to you, today with Me you will be in Paradise.” It’s truly Never too late.