We sit and read scripture in the evenings fairly regularly. Lately, we've been following a reading plan that has been given to Harper through Summit, an after-school program at a local church. She really enjoys reading aloud to us from the Bible - especially ANY portion in red-letter which signifies the actual words of Christ. In fact, her only specification in choosing a new Bible for herself was that it be a red-letter edition.
So, two nights ago we gathered to read the story of the Prodigal Son.
All was going well. Until-
"Mom, what does p.r.o.s.t.i.t.u.t.e.s. spell?"
I had to pause and figure it out . . . ohhhhh. Ding-dangit, you wayward son!
"Right. But what is it?"
I played dumb.
"Prostitutes. The word is prostitutes."
"Mom! I know! But what IS it?"
"It is referring to someone who doesn't treat their body the way God intended."
Gosh, that was lame. I wanted to expand about how some women and men make the choice to abuse their bodies in this way, but also that many poor souls are forced into these situations, etc. I knew, however, that it wasn't the time to delve into the topic as is should be handled. So, I hoped my brief, shoot from the hip (not to mention inadequate) answer would suffice.
But she wasn't done.
"Don't treat their body right, like how?"
"We'll talk more about it later."
"Like later when you put me to bed?"
No, like later when you're 50!
"No, Harper, not tonight. But I promise you that we will talk about it. Just not tonight. Not yet."
Zane was sitting on the floor taking it this entire conversation. His turn.
"I think I know what it is."
Oh, come on . . .
"Well, I'm not sure, actually. But I'm pretty sure it has something to do with something disgusting."
We went on to finish the story focusing on the most important part of the entire piece - at least to me.
31 “‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. 32 But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’” (Luke 15:31-32)
A beautiful story of redemption. We HAVE TO, MUST celebrate when one who is "dead" is brought back to "life" - when one who was "lost" is now "found". We talked about how God's arms are wide open - ready to welcome us back with a hearty celebration, regardless our choices and failures. Regardless of who we once were. For there is nothing that can separate us from His love.
This is true for e.v.e.r.y.o.n.e.