Friday, January 23, 2015
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You might just remember turning your television on and there would be Gilligan's Island. Maybe, you can even hear the theme song playing in your brain. It was a big hit when it first came out.
Now, here's Gilligan, who's the terminally stupid first mate of the S.S. Minnow. The millionaire, his wife,(you're probably thinking the song, now...) the professor, the movie star... Ok, you know, the characters are really well-known. The plot was very simply summed up in the theme song. These people went out on the S.S. Minnow for a three-hour tour. The storm blew them into some unknown island where they were stranded until the series finally ended years later. Some three-hour tour, huh?
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "The Gilligan Syndrome."
By the way, what is the Gilligan Syndrome? Well, it's going farther than you wanted to; staying longer than you planned to. It might be happening to you right now. Jesus told us about a young man it happened to many years ago; our word for today from the Word of God in Luke chapter 15, beginning in verse 13. It's after this man has asked his Dad for the family inheritance that's coming to him. While his Dad's still alive.
"Not long after that," the Bible says, "the younger son got together all he had, went off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything. When he came to his senses, he said, 'How many of my father's hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: "Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.' So he got up and went to his father."
He was just going for a fling on the wild side, just a three-hour tour. He almost never made it back. What was supposed to bring him pleasure and happiness did for just a little while. Ultimately it left him stranded on this spiritual island all by himself. "He squandered his wealth," Jesus said. In other words, he wasted what he'd been given. Have you done that?
He spent everything he had. He paid a much higher price for this thing than he could have ever imagined. He began to be in need. No one gave him anything. The party was over. The bill had come. He was alone except for the pigs. The Bible says, "The way of a transgressor is hard." It always is - sooner or later.
Except it's sin that carries us to a place that's hard to get back from. Here's the ugly truth about sin: It will always take you farther than you wanted to go, it will keep you longer than you planned to stay, and it will cost you more than you ever thought you'd pay. And, maybe you've seen that already. You look at where you are and you never thought you'd be at a place like this. You never thought you'd be stuck in this situation. You never thought you'd be addicted. You never thought you'd be facing what you're having to face now. And the bill has come. If it hasn't, it will.
Maybe, you're listening and you say, "That's all happened to me." Or maybe you're just starting down a sin road that looks exciting, and profitable, and desirable, and you think it will be just a three-hour tour. Sin never is. Listen to God's statement in James 1:15, "After desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death." It will take you where you never meant to go.
If you feel like you're just too far away to ever get back, you can get back the same way the Prodigal Son did, but only that way. It says he "got up and went to his father." It's time for you to run to God instead of running from Him any longer. You say, "He'll never take me." Look, that's why Jesus told this story, to let you know that God is waiting for you to come into His waiting arms. It says "His father saw him. He ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him." God proved He wants you home with Him by sending His Son to die for your very rebellion against Him. For all that you've wasted with your sin, He says come home to Me. He's saying it to you in your heart right now as you listen to this.
Do you want to get home? Into that relationship? Would you get to our website? It's called ANewStory.com. Your new story can begin there. Just start toward Him, God will come running to you too because of what Jesus did on the cross for you. Haven't you been gone from God long enough? It's time to come home.