In our Father’s house, there are many spacious places. I don’t believe that those places are just in heaven. I believe that they are heavenly places in us. They are both a heavenly place in this life and a place of life in heaven beyond where we live today. In both cases, those spacious places are a place where Jesus lives with us and we live with Him. They are places of relationship and abiding with one another. As leaders in the body of Christ we must lead others to discover the place of Christ’s abiding in their lives. To do this, we must be an example of this ourselves so that others can be inspired and follow us in discovering their measure of the Father’s dwelling place in their lives.
John 14:2 In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. 4 And where I go you know, and the way you know.”
I have been addressing what rooms in the Father’s house are like. When we are in the Father’s house we can recognize it by the atmosphere, the ambiance, and the attributes of the room. It is His house and our room in His house and in it we find Him. In it we also find who each of us are meant to be for the glory of Him and for the family name.
In the book of Luke, we find a story of what is often called The Prodigal Son. It is really a story about a father and two sons. You can find the story in Luke 15:11-31.
The prodigal son was the youngest son. He took the boundary and the measure given to him by the father and ventured on a journey of independence. You could say, he ventured on a journey to find himself in life. He wanted to live his own dream. He wanted to do things his own way. He wanted to find life on his own. In this story, this youngest son sought to prove himself, live for himself, gratify himself, and satisfy himself. He was reckless, extravagant, and a consumer in his ways. As a result, he lost everything. The youngest son had a revelation of his failure, but he still did not have a revelation of who his father really was. He found himself feeding pigs, a job that was far below the character of what he had thought was his family heritage. He even considered the pigs to be in a better state of being than himself. He realized that the food the pigs were eating was more than what he could earn for himself. He reasoned in his mind that it would be best to return to his father’s house, but not as a son. He sought to return home and become a hired hand in the employment of his dad. He began his journey to his father’s house that he might find a place of serving, but he did not expect to find a place of love.
In the story, the father had been waiting every day at the edge of the road looking for his youngest son to return. He never sought to oppose his will upon his son, he was expectantly waiting for the return of his son one day. Then one day he saw his son from afar off. He didn’t know if his son had been a success or a failure. He didn’t know if he was married or single. He didn’t know if he was straight or gay. He didn’t know what state of being his son was in, he simply wanted his son to find his room in the father’s house. That room was a place of the father and the son abiding together in all things.
Luke 15:20 “And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him. 21 And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight, and am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ 22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. 23 And bring the fatted calf here and kill it, and let us eat and be merry; 24 for this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ And they began to be merry.
In the father’s house was the father’s best robe and it was ready for the son. That robe was not the outer garment of the son, but of the father. It was a symbol of a personal testimony that reveals the father’s glory. It was the father’s good pleasure to clothe the son in the testimony of his name. It didn’t matter that the son had lost his own coat, he had always been destined to wear the testimony of the family name, the father’s testimony. In the father’s house was the father’s ring. The ring was not the son’s ring, it was the father’s. It was a symbol of the authority of the father and it was also the authority of the son. It was his ability to bring the life of the father’s house to the world. It didn’t matter that the son had lost his ring, he was destined to wear the father’s ring. He was always intended to be a part of the authority of the father’s family name. In the father’s house was the father’s sandals. They were not the son’s sandals. The sandals were a symbol of the father’s inheritance. That inheritance was the measure given to the son that would be a testimony of the father’s inheritance in the world. It didn’t matter that the son had lost his sandals, he was destined to walk in the inheritance of the father for the glory of the father’s house, the family name. The father ordered the feast of the fatted calf. The fatted calf was the father’s best food and it symbolizes the will of the father, as Jesus had said his food was to do the will of His Father. The son was always destined to eat the father’s best food, the will of the father in the son’s life. The hope of the calling belonged to the family. The riches of the inheritance belonged to the family, the power of authority was one of the family name, and the will of the father was the destiny of every member of the father’s house. These things are all attributes of a room in the Father’s house.
Food For Thought,
Ted J. Hanson
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