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. The son said to him, “Father, I have sinned against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.”
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.
I think the thing that I love most about this parable is that the love of the father never changes. It is the same for the son that leaves and for the son that stays. I forget that God’s love stays the same whether I leave or stay, whether others leave or stay. There’s something magnetically attractive in a love that’s not fickle.