Transforming the Orphan

How you hear is as important as what you hear. In Luke 15, Jesus tells the story of a wealthy man’s sons, both of whom had spiritual hearing problems. The father told them all he had would someday be theirs. The elder son took that to mean he had to joylessly perform for it every day of his life. The younger heard it as a rejection of who he was now, and demanded all his inheritance before he’d learned to manage it. Both were completely loved sons, but still chose to see that love as orphans.

An orphan heart is an insecure mindset that’s never satisfied. There’s never enough money or power to fill the void, and it constantly compares what little it does have with what it imagines others do. It punishes those it blames for its pain, actively and passive-aggressively.

There are a lot of orphan mindsets out there—in politics, media, business, education, religion, and of course in families, all interpreting life through fears of failure, rejection, and loss. They hear what their pain tells them, and believe what their fears interpret it to mean.

But the Father hasn’t changed. All he has is yours. There is more than enough. More than enough acceptance, grace, joy, forgiveness, peace, healing, hope, provision, and love. Every day he’s looking for the lost orphans on the road, and reaching out to the orphans in his own house.

Trust Jesus with your heart. I know that seems obvious, but it’s amazing how we can get so distracted we forget. Every day, give him permission to heal any damage, strengthen your relationship with him, and transform how you hear and see, until the bitter, insecure, wounded orphan becomes his joyful, confident, brilliant child.

“So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him” (Luke 15:20).

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