Prodigal son epilogue

I love the picture Jesus gave us of the Father in the prodigal son parable. It’s found in Luke 15:11-32. Verse 20 is my favorite:

But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.


This is the quintessential picture of grace. It has personal meaning for me because I’ve been that prodigal son. I saw the Father run to me when I least deserved it.

What I was thinking about this morning, however, was the epilogue to this parable. Jesus finishes the story of the younger brother at the feast celebrating his return. For the older brother, it ends with the father inviting him to join the celebration.

I woke up today with my typical tornado of fears, demands for the day, and regrets from yesterday. Do you ever wake up that way? Maybe it’s just me. This morning I found the answer, however. What do you suppose happened to the younger son after his party? Here’s what I think. He went to bed, in his room, in the safety and care of his father’s house. The night before he had spent in poverty.

That’s our story as well. We go to bed and wake up each day in our Father’s care and He loves us so much. We never need to wake up in fear again. Peace to you friend!

About Tony Schmitz

Tony Schmitz received his BS in Mechanical Engineering from Temple University in 1993, his MS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Florida in 1996, and his PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Florida in 1999. He is a mechanical engineering professor at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
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2 Responses to Prodigal son epilogue

  1. Thank you for this reminder Dr. Schmitz, I needed it this morning! It seems that so easily I am able to get myself caught up in worry, or regret. God’s love and grace never fails to amaze me! John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.


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