In my 36 years of ministry I have seen sincere Christians struggle to live a life worthy to be called a “true” follower of Jesus. Christians who want to live a life that not only meets the approval of their peers, but more importantly, a life that meets the approval of God. These kinds of Christians tend to fall in one, or eventually both, of two categories. These two categories were described by Jesus when He told the parable of the “prodigal father” that had two sons in Luke 15:11-32. One went out into the world and lived like a “harden sinner”. The other stayed at home with the father and lived like a “God fearing Christian”. One would think that the two sons had nothing in common because of the drastic difference in life-style, but such is not the case: They both wanted to live a life that was pleasing to the father. I know that some of you are thinking that the younger son only wanted to please the father after he wasted his substance in riotous living. To many, like the older son who chose to stay home, it doesn’t seem feasible that the younger son chose to leave home because he desired to please the father. However, I know that it is possible to live like a “hardened sinner” while deep in the core of your being you want to please God.
In my next few blogs I will deal with both categories of struggling Christians: Those who like the younger son want to live right but don’t think they can be happy that way and those who like the older son bite the bullet and work hard to live right. As I deal with each category I will identify the core problem and God given solution of each one. In the mean-time, I want to hear from you. Do you find it hard to live up to God’s standards? Do you thing being a Christian is easy or hard? Which one of the prodigal’s sons do you most identify with and why?