"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 parable of Jesus tells us much about the heart of our heavenly Father. The father in the story shows gracious love for his son in the face of grave insult (by asking for his inheritance, the son was in essence saying, “I can’t wait for you to die to get what’s mine.”) and complies with his request. He also responds with grace upon his wayward son’s return. Verse 20 would suggest the father had been constantly scanning the horizon with long-suffering hope when he runs to him at the first glimpse of his silhouette.
This parable is the third in a series about lost things: a lost sheep, a lost coin, and a lost son. But what is unique about this third story is that what has been lost is patiently waited upon to return. The lost sheep is sought out, scooped up, and carried home. The lost coin is reclaimed after searching and sweeping the whole house until it is found. We see different aspects of lost things being found, but it is the gracious, pursuing love of the Lord that is made obvious to us in this parable.
Your gracious Heavenly Father is waiting for you to return home, no matter how far you have wandered from Him.