LET ME HELP YOU PACK YOUR BAGS

Although I don’t remember this story, my mother has told it to me many times, always with a smile and a laugh. I am sure that you will be just as surprised as I was to learn that I might have been strong-willed and independent as a child. When I didn’t get my way, or when I got in trouble, then I would pout, whine, stomp my foot, or cry. I also would throw out the random threat of, “I’m going to run away from home.” So, because it is Mother’s Day, I am going to tell you what my mom’s response to that threat would be. My mom would simply smile and say, “Here, let me help you pack your bags!” Lol! She knew that I was a scaredy-cat and that I wouldn’t make it past the front door! I was reminded of that story this week as I was reading in Luke 15 about the prodigal son. Most of you have heard the story about the son that left his safe home and then came back later with his tail tucked between his legs. I think that in some ways, I have glossed over this story, and not applied it to my life. But, this past week, the story came to life for me, and I wanted to share this with all of you.

Last week, I talked about how love is a choice that we make over and over again. I thought about that as I read Luke 15:11-12 and saw the decision that the father had to make.

Luke 15:11-12

11 Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons. 12 The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them.

It appears that this man’s son was like me when I was younger. He might not have been happy with everything that was going on in the household, so he wanted to go off on his own. But, the son was smart enough to realize that he was going to need money and that he didn’t have any. When he said, “give me my share of the estate,” it sounded like a demand. I don’t see a question in his words, and I don’t see the word “please” in the statement. Had there been a fuss or fight between the father and son? Was the younger son tired of living in the older brother’s shadow?

The father did not have to give the younger son anything. It wasn’t time for the son to get his inheritance or any part of the father’s estate. The father could have “made” the son stay at the house. Instead, the father chose to give the son his share of the estate.

I have so many questions floating around in my mind about this part of the story. How old was the son? Was this a, “let me help you pack your bags” moment? Did the father think that the son would really leave, or did he believe that he was like me and wouldn’t go past the front door? Was the father crying as he gave the son the money? Did the father stand at the door with tears running down his cheeks as he watched his younger son leave?

This was an “if you love something, let it go” moment for the father. The father gave his son a choice because he loved him. This was a parable that Jesus told the Pharisees, and the Father in the story is our FATHER. Out Father gives us a choice, and He will not make us choose to stay with Him. Like the father in the story, our Father will watch us make the wrong decision through tears. Like the father in the story, He could “make” us do His will, but He loves us too much for that.

Today, you have a choice. Are you going to pack your bags and walk out the door to do your own thing? As you make choices every day, look over your shoulder to see if your Father is standing in the doorway with tears running down his cheeks.

Have A Blessed Day and Happy Mother’s Day!

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  1. Sandra wrote:

    Love this devotional! Happy Mother’s Day

    Posted 5.10.20 Reply
    • Tania wrote:

      Thanks, Sandra. I hope you have a great day!

      Posted 5.10.20 Reply
  2. Nancy Onorato wrote:

    I love your message today, Tanya. It’s comforting to know that our Heavenly Father also loves us enough to “take us back” after we’ve learned our lessons. I knew we were a lot alike, Gurl. When I was three, I ran away, taking only my cat, to the neighbor’s across the street because my wonderful mother wouldn’t let me swim in my little wading pool on a chilly Southern California day. That woman was a saint, but how she enjoyed telling me that story! Happy Mother’s Day!

    Posted 5.10.20 Reply
    • Tania wrote:

      Lol! Nancy, that is a wonderful story! I slipped off to the neighbor’s across the street once too.

      Posted 5.10.20 Reply
  3. Linda wrote:

    Tania, thank you so much for this beautiful message. Your words are written very touching and if anyone can read this without a tear I would be surprised! I just started following you this March and everyday I can’t wait to see what you have to say and see what I am going to order that day!?? I am sure you are the kind of person I would love to hang out with! ?
    Linda (also known as Linda loves to ?) Happy Mother’s Day!

    Posted 5.10.20 Reply
    • Tania wrote:

      I am so glad that you found my blog and that you are enjoying my Sunday posts.

      Posted 5.10.20 Reply
  4. Daphne wrote:

    Tania,Thank you for the beautiful message today,loved reading it Have a wonderful Sunday .Happy Mother’s Day.❤️

    Posted 5.10.20 Reply
    • Tania wrote:

      I hope you have a wonderful Mother’s Day also!!!

      Posted 5.10.20 Reply
  5. Julie Kapala wrote:

    This is beautiful. Thank you!

    Posted 5.10.20 Reply
    • Neicey wrote:

      My eldest sister takes great delight in telling everyone about the time I ran away from home. I was about six years old and took myself off to my Grandma’s who lived just around the corner from my Mum and Dad’s house, I had taken a little toy suitcase packed with what, to me was important. When Mum came to take me home, she looked in the suitcase and in it was a vest and ONE sock!!!!!!

      That was sixty years ago, and it still makes my sister’s laugh. I only wish I could pack that light now when I go on holiday!!!!

      Posted 5.10.20 Reply
      • Tania wrote:

        At least one of your feet would stay warm! Lol! It is funny the things that we did as children.

        Posted 5.10.20 Reply
    • Tania wrote:

      Thanks, Julie! I am glad that you liked the post.

      Posted 5.10.20 Reply
  6. Sue wrote:

    Happy Mother’s Day, Tania! This is one of those messages that just hits home, thank you for that. The image of our Father at the door with tears really moved me. Have a beautiful day!

    Posted 5.10.20 Reply
    • Tania wrote:

      It hit home to me too, Sue!

      Posted 5.10.20 Reply
  7. Beth wrote:

    So cute….my mother always said “write when you find work!” I never went too far with that on my mind! Happy Mothers Day 🙂

    Posted 5.10.20 Reply
    • Tania wrote:

      Happy Mother’s Day to you too, Beth!

      Posted 5.10.20 Reply
  8. evegpt wrote:

    Happy Mothers Day, Tania. Keep safe. i use to run away but I’d climb a tree and read until I felt better or got hungry. Not much of a prodigal daughter. I’ve always loved the story but just between you and me, it took awhile for me to understand it’s about repentance and forgiveness.

    Posted 5.10.20 Reply
    • Tania wrote:

      It took me a while to figure that part out too!

      Posted 5.10.20 Reply
  9. ragain1 wrote:

    Beautiful, touching message on this special day! Happy Mother’s Day! Much love to all your family!

    Posted 5.10.20 Reply
    • Tania wrote:

      I am glad that you enjoyed the post!

      Posted 5.10.20 Reply
  10. Liane wrote:

    This is also a testimony to the lesson of forgiveness which works both ways. When I was a headstrong teen I enraged my mother to the point of her hitting me in frustration. I am not condoning child abuse. I was so damaged by that I vowed never to strike my children ever. And I did not ever strike my children in anger. I do believe a well aimed swat on a diapered bottom was applied as a means of getting their attention! Well at some point when I was about 16 I about had it with the abuse. I did not take the cat or even a coat and I ran over to a neighbor’s home. I told the whole ugly story to this wonderful woman and she, along with my dad, arranged for me to go live with my grandmother. My mother was so infuriated she did not attend my graduation. She ignored my first born child (second one, as well, many years later). She was hard, cold, hateful. But…you had to know there was a but coming LOL, the Lord put a Godly woman in the house next door, and invited my parents to attend the church in the little town. Thus my mom’s road to peace began and the peace and forgiveness I was able to experience. It took many decades for me to find peace with my mom. But in the end, she asked for my forgiveness and on that date we vowed together to never speak of it again. About 5 yrs later, my dad, on his deathbed, asked me to forgive him for allowing the abuse to go on. I had no idea he even knew. Of course I forgave him as well and on that day he accepted Christ as his Savior.

    Rereading the passage in Luke today made me realize that we are to forgive the way our Father forgives us — will open hearts and a will to follow His Word. I had only 10 years with my mom after our reconciliation but they were full of joy and laughter and much discovery. When the son in the parable returned he was a changed man, and richer for it. I had to flee, I was in fear, but I returned, healed. Not every mother is a saint but forgiveness is such a power transformative process. Please friends here, if you have some forgiving to do, please do it.

    Thank you Tania for all you do for us. It goes so far beyond just influencing our wardrobe choices. It affects our hearts and minds and our walk with God.

    Posted 5.10.20 Reply
    • Tania wrote:

      Liane, this was a wonderful story that had a happy ending. But, as you said, not every story turns out as happy. The minute the son decided to return, he repented, and the Father was there to receive him with open arms. I am glad that you were able to receive your mother back, and never speak of it again. Forgive as we want to be forgiven.

      Posted 5.10.20 Reply
  11. Nicole wrote:

    Great message happy mother’s day

    Posted 5.10.20 Reply
  12. lwitzal wrote:

    I love this post- It must be our age group- my mother did the same thing with me- she started to pack my bag for me – and boy was I distraught- she called my bluff- I never did that again.Love your blog and your inspiration.Thank you

    Posted 5.13.20 Reply
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