A few days later this younger son packed all his belongings and moved to a distant land, and there he wasted all his money in wild living. About the time his money ran out, a great famine swept over the land, and he began to starve. He persuaded a local farmer to hire him, and the man sent him into his fields to feed the pigs. The young man became so hungry that even the pods he was feeding the pigs looked good to him. But no one gave him anything. (NLT)
Our pursuit of freedom can lead to captivity. Our possession of wealth can lead to poverty. Our dreams and desires for a better life can turn out for the worse. So it was for the young man who demanded an early granting of his family inheritance. He found it very easy to waste money. His wealth did not guarantee companionship or satisfaction.
He was reduced to the lowliest of work, something abhorrent to any self respecting Jew. The young man in the pigsties in a far country is a picture of utter desolation. No money, no friends, no prospects. His dreams of a new life of freedom and pleasure have been shattered. The greener grass outside the family home turned out to be pigsty mud.
We may not experience such dramatic decline in fortune. But we do think that independence from our own heavenly Father will mean freedom. We might think that if only we had more money life would become what it ought to be. We might want to forget morality and standards for a while and let our hair down.
It is a loser’s game. Turning our back on our Father might seem an attractive option in certain situations. There might be greener grass elsewhere. But beware, for this young man the greener grass outside the family home turned out to be pigsty mud.