silhouette of man standing near window



It seems like a long time ago – as well as yesterday morning – that I was getting my home ready for Atlas and making a small pile of gifts for him to discover when he walked in the door. As I was arranging his pile of presents, I noticed the eagerness I felt in my heart to see the look on his face when he saw his Dad had gotten him surprises.

“Aaron, don’t you know..that’s how I feel about you?”

That moment was one of the times where I felt I could hear the voice of God – almost audibly. It stunned me. In an instant, I dropped down on the couch and had one of the most honest conversations with God in my life. For years, I had viewed the Almighty as some external, perfect energy in the sky that simply waited with lightning bolts for me to make a mistake.

In that moment, I felt what it meant to be a son of God – for the first time.

A lot of my life journey has been spent in the role of being a son. It’s only in recent years that I discovered what it meant to be a Father, with the perspective that being a Dad gives a man. As a Dad, I see the world around me differently.

As a Dad, I began to understand God in an entirely new way.

I never could comprehend the idea that my actions, choices or words could inflict a sense of pain on God, or cause Him disappointment that I had chosen to follow my own path, rather than the one He set out for me like a dinner table. Now as a Dad, I began to understand that dynamic in an entirely new dimension, and it has changed a lot of things in my life.

How I came to meet God was a journey that was full of more mistakes than it was victories. In every way, I encountered God through the path of the prodigal son, who lived a life of scandal and pleasurable pursuits before hitting rock bottom and coming home.

I’ve hit rock bottom. Several chapters of my life seemed as if they made rock bottom my resting place – or identity. During those times, I remember the moments where I’d call out to God, asking for help.

Sometimes, I was calling out to see if even in that moment – He still loved me.

It didn’t matter the hour or the state of mind I was in (or lack of mind) I always felt that somehow my cries out were heard.

There’s something remarkable about the story of the prodigal son – something that has always brought a tear to my eye when I think of it; it is the thing that happened when the prodigal son decided to return home.

Weary, broke[n] and full of shame, the prodigal decided to return home to his Dad, hoping that he could return as a servant in the house. When he approached the entrance to the family property, the Father saw him – before the son saw his Father.

What did the Dad do?

He ran. He RAN to greet his son, embracing him with tears in his eyes and welcoming him back to join the family.

When your face is down in shame, know that when you look up – you will see your Dad running to greet you.

I will never forget the way that God ran to greet me. I was met with love, support, encouragement and grace. I wasn’t greeted as a sinner, but as a Son, and I found that I had finally returned Home.

I’ve been through some very difficult times in my life, and I’ve also found myself in some very dark and disgusting places. In every way, I’ve done enough things to wear a crown of shame and regret. Yet, I have found a new hope, purpose and place in my life by holding these broken pieces to God and dropping the pieces through the holes that had nails in them – and watched every broken piece become whole again. New. Redeemed.

Today, more than ever, I am thankful that there is a grace, love and powerful forgiveness that has the power to transform lives – even that of a prodigal son.

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