I have the habit of blaming God and others when my life becomes a complicated mess of
my own making. I want someone else to be responsible. In reality, I need to shoulder the
blame and turn my life over to God who knows what plans he has for my life. It is easier
to "shoot at others" than it is to shoulder my own responsibility. I enjoy a story told in the Daily Bread about this very matter.
It is said that when the British and French were fighting in Canada in the 1750s, Admiral
Phipps, commander of the British fleet, was told to anchor outside Quebec. He was given
I am so happy to see you this morning. How are you? (children may respond)
Let's play a game I call “Lost and Found.” Okay? (children respond)
(presenter role plays) Uh, oh, I lost something for today's message. Hmm, I wonder where it could be. It's a box like this. (shows approximate dimensions) (instruct the children to look around the immediate area) (then presenter or child finds it)
Since the Fourth Sunday in Lent has been historically identified as Laetare (Rejoicing Sunday), it is most appropriate that the lessons collectively testify to a theme for which we can rejoice — God saves us by his grace!
In this familiar and well-loved story of the Prodigal Son, I often wonder what happened to the mother of the family. She's totally ignored. So are any daughters. It seems like a completely male stronghold. So much so that I wonder whether perhaps the mother had died some years previously, and that was the cause of much of the unhappiness displayed by both the father and the sons. Or whether the father was such a domineering character that his wife played no real part in family life, but simply bowed her head in compliance with all his wishes, no matter how extreme they were.