View Full Version : Jude

November 16th, 2011, 07:50 PM
Christmas was only a few days away. Jessie sat in his recliner, his hands on the chair arms and his bible in his lap. The flock milled about, finding their seats on the sofa and on the floor. A quiet buzz of excitement was circulating through the flock. Members of Jessie’s small flock and his girlfriend Maggie Mardileen were planning a surprise supper for Jessie’s thirty-third birthday, which just so happened to be on the twenty-fifth of December. Jessie had an almost forced smile on his face.

The flock had come together at Jessie’s home for their Thursday evening bible study. They all wanted to be more God-like so they met weekly to read His word and spend time with one another; fellowship if you would. Everyone finally found a seat and a young female flock member lit several candles and dimmed the lights. Maggie sat in an easy chair in the corner, a wry grin on her face. Jessie, of course, knew what was going on and he didn’t really want a birthday supper, but he would never let Maggie know it. He looked at her and forced a more earnest smile to his face. There was still some soft chattering among the group and Jessie cleared his throat. The room fell silent almost immediately. There were smiles on every face in the room. “It is so good to see all of you again tonight,” Jessie said. Everyone replied likewise that they were very happy to be there and how nice it was to see Jessie. “I think we should begin the evening with a prayer of thanks to God for letting us be able to come together like this. Paul, would you be so kind as to lead us in prayer?”

Paul stood and cleared his throat. It was no small honor to be asked by Jessie to lead the flock in prayer. “Our Father, who art in Heaven,”he began, “hallowed, be thy name. We thank Thee so much for the opportunity to gather together in this fashion to worship Thee. We so look forward dear Lord to the day when we finally see Thee. We cannot wait to be in Thy presence. We know that we know neither the day nor the hour when you shall return but we shall continue to serve Thee until that day arrives. Many of us here tonight have traveled considerable distances to be here, dear Lord. We ask that as we leave here tonight, that you watch over us, each and every one, and keep us safe until the next time we can all be together and worship Thee. In your son’s name we pray, amen.”

“Thank you, Paul,” Jessie said. “Now tonight children, I would like to ask you a question. “Have I ever told you about the prodigal son?”

“Sure you have,” Peter blurted out from his seat on the floor. “We’ve talked about that a bunch of times.”

“Well, nonetheless,” Jessie said, “We’re going to talk about him again tonight. Everyone open your bibles and turn to Luke, chapter 15, verses 11 through 32.” Jessie read the entire scripture aloud to his flock. They all followed along verse by verse as he read and they clung to every word that came from his mouth. He read to them the story of a father who had two sons and had decided to give them their inheritances early. And the younger son took his immediately and went off to a foreign land and spent it almost as quickly as he could. A great famine came and the son had spent all his money and he was miserably poor and hadn’t enough to eat. He decided to return home and ask his father for a job as a servant. And the father saw him coming from far away and ordered his other son to go and kill the fatted calf so they could celebrate his brother coming home. This didn’t sit well with the older brother and he told the father so. He complained that he had always been faithful and a good son but his father had never killed a calf for him. And the father explained to him that his younger son had basically been dead to his family and now he had returned to life so the family must take him in and celebrate.

Just as Jessie finished the reading, the phone rang in the kitchen and Maggie jumped up and ran in to answer it. She picked it up and on the other end of the line was a long lost friend of both hers and Jessie that they had not heard from in years. In fact, the friend was once a member of the same flock as Jessie, and he and Jessie weren’t just friends, they were best friends. That was long ago when they were much younger. When they became adults, the friend had gone off on his own to discover what else was in the world and Jessie had stayed with the flock and eventually became the shepherd. Maggie was very surprised to hear the friend’s voice and the friend asked her if he could speak to Jessie. She tried to put him off and told him that Jessie was teaching a Bible study and asked the friend to call back. The friend said he didn’t know when he could and asked her again to let him speak to Jessie. She reluctantly agreed and went back into the other room and told Jessie he had a phone call. Jessie excused himself from the flock and went into the kitchen to answer the phone.

Now the friend had not been a member of the flock for many, many years and he and Jessie had not really kept in touch. He had talked to Jessie’s parents, Joe and Mary, on several occasions and always asked how his friend Jessie was doing. They always politely told him that Jessie was doing well and bragged about how he had become the shepherd. They told of how he tended the flock and tried to grow the flock and keep any of the sheep from leaving or disappearing, perhaps being taken by a wolf. The friend would ask if they had told Jessie that he had called them before and had asked about Jessie and they would answer that they had told him that he had called. He would ask how Jessie had responded and they would tell him that Jessie had just said okay.

So Jessie picked up the phone and was very surprised to hear his old friend’s voice. The friend apologized for bothering him and told him that he had gotten his number from Mary and Joe, whom he had talked to a couple of days ago and found out that they had gone to Birmingham for the Christmas holiday and were staying there at The Inn, which was very surprising because usually there were no rooms available this time of year. The friend said that he had just been thinking of him and wanted to give him a call. Jessie thanked him for calling and said that that was very nice of him but he was busy with his flock and couldn’t talk and hung up the phone.

He walked back to the other room and asked the flock, ‘Now, where were we?”

“We were talking about the prodigal son,” they answered.

“That’s right,” Jessie said, and sat back down in his recliner.