He Ran To Me

Lent is a time of personal reflection. It is a time to do some deep personal evaluation, a sort of inventory of our status and relationship with God. Of course, Lent is not the only time we should be doing this. Ideally each evening prior to sleep we should perform an examination of conscience to see how we did that day.

I don’t know about you, but anytime I reflect on my personal missteps on my spiritual journey I am again saddened by the reality of my sinfulness. However, there is one Bible story that always brings me hope and joy. The story that I find so comforting is the story of the Prodigal Son. I recently saw where this story is one of the top 20 most recognized stories in the Bible.

Upon reading the story I believe that most of us can see ourselves as the wayward child. This child in his selfishness demanded to have his future inheritance now then he left home and wasted his father’s money on inappropriate things. How many times have we, in rebellious fashion, squandered the many blessings that our Heavenly Father has bestowed on us? Eventually the son came to his senses, he realized the errors of his ways and he returned home to tell his father he was sorry for his actions. It is here, near the end of the Prodigal Son story where the son encounters his father running to him in a moment of tender love and joy.

Let’s take a look at some specific verses that Luke wrote in 15: 17-24

“Coming to his senses he thought, ‘How many of my father’s hired workers have more than enough food to eat, but here am I, dying from hunger. I shall get up and go to my father and I shall say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I no longer deserve to be called your son; treat me as you would treat one of your hired workers.”‘ So he got up and went back to his father. While he was still a long way off, his father caught sight of him, and was filled with compassion. He ran to his son, embraced him and kissed him. His son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you; I no longer deserve to be called your son.’ But his father ordered his servants, ‘Quickly bring the finest robe and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Take the fattened calf and slaughter it. Then let us celebrate with a feast, because this son of mine was dead, and has come to life again; he was lost, and has been found.’ Then the celebration began.”

Examine for a minute what the Father did not do. He did not dredge up the sins of the son. He did not ask the son for his money back. He did not chastise the son for squandering the money. He did not say, “I told you this would happen”. He did not tell the son that he was disappointed in the son’s actions. He did not compare the son to his older brother. He did not make the son feel guilty. He did not tell the son how much the loss of half of the family’s wealth was going to impact the family moving forward. He did not tell him he was not welcome anymore because of past misdeeds. If you were the father could you see yourself reacting in one of these ways?

No my friends what the Father didwas run. That’s right he ran to his son. We as readers get the impression that the father never even heard the son’s confession. He was too caught up in his loving embrace of his long missing son. As the son was trying to tell his father that he was sorry the father was already ordering the servants to prepare for a party. I have always been left with the impression that the father most likely went out every day and gazed off into the distance, down the long dusty road, hoping beyond hope that his son would return home.

Just the other morning as I was driving to church for an early Saturday meeting I was reflecting on some of the many ways that I too have rejected God’s love through my own sinful behavior. As I was thinking about my failures and shortcomings I turned on a favorite song of mine. For whatever reason on this early Saturday morning as I drove on a lonely, dark stretch of mountainous highway this song hit me harder than usual. In fact I just began to cry as I absorbed the words and meaning of this song. This was an incredible encounter with God and His love for me and it was my closest moment with God this past week.

The song is “When God Ran” and I was listening to the version by Phillips, Craig and Dean. The song was written by singer, songwriter Benny Ray Hester. Hester’s recording of this song touched the consciousness of Christian’s worldwide and was one of the longest running number one songs in Contemporary Christian music.

No doubt many of you are familiar with this song as I was. Some of you may not be. But even for those of us who do know the song it is interesting how even old songs can touch us in new and deeper ways sometimes. This is what happened to me on this day. It seems appropriate for me to write about this during Lent.

In what ways have you rejected God’s love? How have you demanded your inheritance from God and then squandered it. In what inappropriate actions like the Prodigal son, have you engaged? Have you found yourself in a low point in life like the son did? Is it time for you to turn away from something in your life? Is it time to come home to the Father’s loving embrace?

Imagine for just a moment that the Father is pacing back and forth in Heaven hoping that you will turn back to him. Each day he looks to see if you are coming down the path. No matter what we have done, our God stands ready to forgive us. He stands ready to run to us. He wants to hold and embrace us. He loves us so much. John 3:16-17

“For God so loved the world that he gave his only son,

So that everyone who believed in him might not perish

But have eternal life.

For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world,

But that the world might be saved through him.”

God is ready to run to you, are you ready to turn back to him today?

When God Ran

[Verse 1:]

Almighty God, The Great I Am,

Immovable Rock, Omnipotent, Powerful,

Awesome Lord.

Victorious Warrior, Commanding King of Kings, Mighty Conqueror and the only time, The only time I ever saw him run, Was when…

[Chorus:]

He ran to me,

He took me in His arms,

Held my head to His chest,

Said “My son’s come home again!”

Lifted my face,

Wiped the tears from my eyes,

With forgiveness in His voice He said

“Son, do you know I still love You?”

He caught me By surprise, When God ran…

[Verse 2:]

The day I left home,

I knew I’d broken His heart.

And I wondered then, if things could ever be the same.

Then one night,

I remembered His love for me.

And down that dusty road, ahead I could see, It was the only time, It was the only time I ever saw Him run.

And then…

[Repeat Chorus]

He caught me by surprise.

And He brought me to my knees.

When God ran… I saw Him run to me.

[Bridge:]

I was so ashamed, all alone, and so far away.

But now I know, that He’s been waiting for this day…

I saw Him run to me,

He took me in His arms,

Held my head to his chest,

Said “My son’s come home again!”

Lifted my face,

Wiped the tears from my eyes,

With forgiveness in His voice

I felt his love for me again.

He ran to me,

He took me in His arms,

Held my head to his chest,

Said “My son’s come home again!”

Lifted my face,

Wiped the tears from my eyes,

With forgiveness in His voice

He said “Son”

He called me Son.

He said “Son, do you know I still love You?”

He ran to me (When God Ran)

(I saw Him run to me)

And then I ran to Him

(When God ran)

When God ran

You can click here to watch the YouTube video if you have time now, or you can click one of these options and download the song from iTunes or Amazon so that you have it to listen to whenever you need to be uplifted. I hope and pray that you can close your eyes and see God running to you right this minute. I pray that you always remain in his loving embrace.

Heavenly Father,I am brought to tears by the thought of you running to me, knowing full well how often I have sinned against you. The depth of your love for me Father is beyond my human understanding. Thank you for your mercy and your loving embrace. Help me to remain close at your side. Amen.

Brian Pusateri

Brian Pusateri

Brian is a Christian author and speaker. Brian, a lifelong Catholic, felt his life was forever changed when God spoke to his heart while attending an eight day silent Christian retreat in November of 2011. Soon after that retreat Brian founded 4th Day Letters and Broken Door Ministries. With the God inspired message of mercy and unconditional love that was placed on his heart during that retreat, Brian has been impacting others all over the country and around the world with his weekly letters, his talks, and his all day Christian retreats. Brian’s life was again impacted in a very dramatic way when his eyesight suddenly became permanently impaired due to a diagnosis of Multiple Scleroses (MS) in June of 2014. This health challenge has only served to draw Brian closer to God and bolster the importance of this timely yet ageless message.
Brian Pusateri

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