The threatened snow arrived. That’s a rarity in sunny Bognor. No way of knowing how long it will stay… will it be a “snow day” for the schools? All buses in Brighton have been cancelled tonight. Because snow is unusual here, I couldn’t resist going out with camera and tripod. Just to prove it snowed.
It’s no joke for those caught in the disruption of travel, for those too poor to be able to heat their homes, and even worse for the homeless.
Now I’m back inside in the warm, and looking at my photo. The open door and the footsteps on the path remind me of a story.
A young man was impatient, rude, and disrespectful toward his father. Demanding his inheritance, and grabbing the cash, he went off to enjoy living. Friends are easy to find when you’re well off, and money is always easy to spend, so for a while he had fun. Then the money ran out. He tried working on zero-hour contracts, but had a thin time of it.
Eventually he came to his senses, and went home. Dad, naturally, thumped him hard… oh, hang on, that’s not how it goes. ACTUALLY, Dad had been looking out for him every day, and was thrilled to see his son. Big brother was less gracious, but hey, happy families and all that guff.
The original version told by Jesus is sometimes called “The Prodigal Son” or else “The Forgiving Father” … and might even be called the story of the “Mean and Unforgiving Brother.” All three characters played a role in a story of folly, ingratitude, stupidity, broken relationships- and LOVE. Father God loves with a passion. Grace is what we call it when we get what we don’t deserve- forgiveness, acceptance, and love.
It may just be my whimsical thinking… but the door stands open, the lights and fires are lit, and those footprints in the snow mark the times when Dad went looking to make sure the wandering son could find his way home.
The door is open- because love lives here.