We are spoiled. There are so many excellent meditations and inspired stories available to us. Everyday I have to force myself to delete many of them…it’s just too much…how much steak and lobster can I handle. Well, for those of you thinking, “Dave, where does your BLOG fall in this mouth watering and tempting cuisine…. well, my BLOG is a break from the finer foods, more in the “fast food category”…a nice bag of White Castle burgers or a Macdonald’s quarter pounder with cheese, along with some fries , salt and catsup, and a carton of cold milk…..aaaaahhhhhh. Anyway… where was I?
The other day I read a reflection on the Prodigal Son by a French priest …. it was terrific. (Fr. Jean du Ceur, Magnificat 3-27-22) Describing the prodigal son, he says “soon he finds himself stripped of everything and is forced to reflect.” That is a great insight…often in our sin and stupidity and poor decisions , we find ourselves trapped and “forced to reflect”. If we weren’t trapped, we wouldn’t reflect on our life and our poor decisions. God allows us to trip over our sins, fall on our face and be forced to reflect. I can attest to the fact that this process is not a lot of fun. Coming face to face with our stupidity is not a lot of fun. Can anyone relate to this besides me?
Fr. Jean goes on to say that, “in the depths of his abjection, the prodigal son has the grace to recall the goodness of his father” and humbly returns, happy to simply be a servant of this good father. But of course this is where this great parable gets kicked up a notch. The father elevates this mess, this death of his son, to a “celebration extraordinaire”… with finest robe, fatted calf, kingly ring, dancing and music … because his son was dead and now has come to life… was lost and now is found. The heart of God is revealed.
Here’s the knockout punch from Fr. Jean… “Remember each time you pick yourself up after a fall, the feast of the prodigal son is renewed…your father in heaven clothes you again in the most beautiful cloak, puts a ring on your finger, and tells you to dance with joy…. after the absolution, you should dance like the prodigal son did at the request and for the joy of his father. We do not dance enough in the spiritual life.”(ibid)
What a wonderful exhortation ! We need to do more dancing. If we recognized the greatness of our salvation, of the forgiveness of our sin, that we are restored to the royal family, we would do some serious dancing. If you have experienced the love of Christ and the forgiveness of your sin, the promise of eternal life in heaven, then you need to stop right now, stand up and start dancing. Yes, I’m talking to you. I know you may be in the doctor’s office or at Shoprite or sitting with your spouse in your recliner or even alone, but let’s go.
I have to end this BLOG right now, because I have some serious dancing to do.