And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.

Luke 15:20 ESV


The parable of the prodigal son is my favorite parable. The part that always sticks out most to me is Luke 15, verse 20: the father watches for his son and runs down the road towards him. He receives him with open arms and celebrates his return.

I used to think through how the scenario could have played out. The father could have written the younger son off and never received him back. He could have waited on the porch for his son and, once he arrived, accepted him as a servant in his house so he could earn back his inheritance.

Instead, the imagery we are given is the father running down the road to embrace his lost son.

The reason this parable resonates with me is the fact the father runs down the road to embrace his son. I imagine the son has none of the inheritance in hand, he is covered in filth from the pigs, and he is completely broken. Despite all of that, his father still embraces him.

It is so easy for us to get caught up in our sin to the point where we feel like we cannot come back home. We feel we have lost too much of the inheritance, we are too dirty, or we are broken beyond repair. We think: “Surely the father will not accept me back now.”

But this parable creates a different picture. It reminds us the Father’s love is unconditional. We are to come to him as we are. We are to come empty-handed, dirty, and broken, because it is through Christ that we are restored.


Dear God,

Thank you for being a father who loves no matter what. I pray as we receive love and grace from you that we show that same love towards others. Thank you for being our restoration. I pray we find peace in that and are emboldened to share the gospel with others. Please let our testimony of once being lost but now being found be a part of advancing your kingdom.


Steven Sutton

Crossings KIDS Programming and Production Coordinator


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