The Prodigal Heir (Part II): Parent’s Response
October 27th, 2014
In PART I of the Prodigal Heir series, I highlighted the son’s response to his father after “blowing his inheritance.” He said, “I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me as one of your hired men.”
HE TOOK PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR HIS DECISIONS AND ACTIONS.
All too often, “prodigal heirs” spend more time and energy making excuses for their actions and not taking full responsibility for them. When they do this, it only enhances the friction in the family and delays the healing that is necessary for the family to flourish.
For this article. I will focus on the father’s response to his son blowing the inheritance. We all know what his father’s response was in the Prodigal Son parable: “You got what you deserved. I warned you. You not only embarrassed yourself, but our family too.”
Actually, it was none of these! Instead, the father in this parable sets an example for all of us parents to seriously consider… a posture of profound empathy, forgiveness and love.
Before the son even returned home after blowing his inheritance the parable reads, “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.”
However, his father’s response didn’t stop there. “But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.”
How parents respond to their children’s mishaps, irresponsible choices, or pernicious behaviors will make all the difference between perpetuating the loss and pain, or bringing healing to not only to the prodigal heir, but to the entire family.
In my book, LEGACY, one of the chapters is focused on preparing the next generation and how the next generation can prepare themselves.
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