The Ever-Present God
“I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Hebrews 13:5 (ESV)
It is obvious from the story of the Prodigal Son that the father was confident his impetuous son would return. Luke tells us that even when the son was still some way off from home, his father saw him and ran to greet him with great gusto (Luke 15:20). There were no recriminations from the older man – he was just overjoyed that his errant son had come home. What’s more, he ordered a celebration.
But let’s turn from the wayward son for a moment and look at the father and his older son. The one who had a bad attitude towards the whole affair. The older brother became angry and refused to go in to the party. What was the reaction of the father? Did he just let his older son stew in his anger? No. His father went out and pleaded with him (Luke 15:28). Despite the son’s negative reaction, the father continued to provide support.
What lesson can be gleaned from this part of the story? Simply this; even when we go wrong, God is more than willing to walk alongside and give help. When God banished Adam and Eve from Eden, where was God when they left? He went out with them. God was there to provide the clothing they needed in their new situation. He didn’t allow their sin to get in the way of His concern.
Other stories lead us to conclude that God always wants to be with us during our lives – whatever the situation. When Noah had built the ark, who was there to shut the door? God! (Genesis 7:16). When the tower of Babel was being built, God was there on the construction site (Genesis 11:5). And when Israel was in the wilderness—even after rebellion—God was dwelling in the midst of the congregation (Exodus 25:8).
Later, John records that “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14 KJV). Today, God is still willing to participate in our lives, now through His Spirit (John 14:16, 17). Indeed, we have a wonderful promise in Hebrews that God will never leave us or forsake us. As the story of the prodigal son’s brother reveals, even when we might not be in the best of attitudes, God is still there, ready to provide support and help.
Our loving ever-present Father, the scriptures show us that you are always among your creation. Please help us to respond to your concern and allow you into every aspect of our lives. Through your Son’s name we pray.
Submitted by Philip Stevens
Worldwide Church of God Great Baddow
United Reformed Church
CHELMSFORD CM2 7HH
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