“Now his older son was in the field, and as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing. And he called one of the servants and asked what these things meant. And he said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fattened calf, because he has received him back safe and sound.’ But he was angry and refused to go in. His father came out and entreated him, but he answered his father, ‘Look, these many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed your command, yet you never gave me a young goat, that I might celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours came, who has devoured your property with prostitutes, you killed the fattened calf for him!’ And he said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. It was fitting to celebrate and be glad, for this your brother was dead, and is alive; he was lost, and is found”
~ Luke 15:25-32
The Older Brother sits outside and complains, complains because his younger brother is home and his father has thrown a party to welcome him back. His complaint has nothing to do with his younger brother, although he quickly points out his sins to their father, but has everything to do with what he wants and what he feels he is entitled to. His complaints are selfish, “I have done …. but you never did for me.”
What about me? And my friends?
Have I not done all that you asked?
Typically we relate to the younger brother, we were the ones lost but now found. But I’m learning that I need to guard my heart against the lurking tendencies of the Older Brother. Recently the Lord began pulling back the layers of my heart and revealing to me that often times I act just as like the Older Brother.
I AM THE OLDER BROTHER
For me it was in not rejoicing over the Lord choosing to bless others, whether small or large, while on the surface happy for them, underneath quietly asking what about me? Haven’t I done all that You asked? Come on Lord, I’m in Seminary, I’m giving my life to ministry, where’s my fattened calf? The heart of the Older Brother looks at himself and wonders what about me? Instead of looking at Christ and being in awe while rejoicing in all that He does and is doing in and around the world, whether it directly pertains to them or not.
With the heart of the Older Brother laid open before a Holy Lord, now able to take my eyes off of self and my selfish wants I hear the words, “Son you are always with Me, all that is mine is yours!”
The simple reminder that I am His!
Who needs a fattened calf, when they grasp that they are
Fellow Heirs With Christ!