If you've got a tie that's gone out of style, hang onto it. It will probably be back in style eventually - and you can be cool again. In fact, a lot of clothes are in, then out, then eventually back in again. But it's not just clothes - it can happen to toys, too. For example, that classic toy - the yo-yo! They were popular when I was a kid! And, no, they weren't made out of stone back then! But they say the yo-yo is actually making a comeback! In this age of computers and high-tech video games, a lot of kids are interested in that little round wooden toy at the end of the string. It's great. And they're learning the same old tricks - they're doing "walk the dog" and "around the world." I feel like I'm in a time warp! I never could master all that fancy stuff. But there was always one thing I could count on with my trusty yo-yo - when it got to the end of the string, it started coming back to me! Unless, of course, it wasn't attached.
Well, I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You about "The Yo-Yo Comeback."
That yo-yo has something important to teach us about the most important relationship in our lives - our personal relationship with Jesus Christ. More about the yo-yo in just a moment.
First, our word for today. It comes from Luke 15:17-18 - right out of the story of the Prodigal Son. You know, the young man who got his inheritance from his dad while his dad was still alive and took off to party, until he partied it all away and found himself literally living with the pigs. "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.'"
Did this boy ever stop being this man's son? No. Did he get away from this father who loved him? Yes. Could he ultimately stay away? No. He remembered what life with his father was like, and he returned home. You may be somewhere in that picture right now.
Do you have a personal relationship with God as your Heavenly Father? If you have put your trust in Christ to be your Personal Rescuer from your sin, the answer is yes. Now, once you belong to God, can you get away from Him? Yes - just like the son in this story. Can you ultimately stay away from Him? Not if you really belong to Him.
1 John 5:13 says that if you who have believed in the Son of God, "you may know what you have eternal life." Not feel like you have, hope you have - you know that you're going to heaven because of what Jesus did on the cross. But what about all those people who claim to know Jesus and yet show little sign of it in the way they live? Did they have Jesus and then lose Him? Listen to the Father's words in 1 John 3:9 - "No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God's seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been born of God."
He cannot go on sinning. If that professing Christian keeps on making a practice of sinning, they don't lose their God-relationship - they show they never had it!
Which brings us back to that yo-yo. When a yo-yo gets the end of the string, it starts coming back. Unless, of course, it isn't attached. If you really know Jesus, you can only get so far without starting to come back to Him. Unless you're not really attached to Him. In which case, you'll keep on going.
Maybe you're away from your Savior right now. But don't you miss Him? The greatest peace, the greatest love you've ever experienced in your life was when you were close to Jesus. And now, you're feeling hollow inside - guilty - lost.
But like the loving father with his prodigal son, Jesus is waiting to welcome you back with open arms. If you really know Him, you miss Him - and you'd like to be home in His love once more. You've been away long enough - today is your day to come back to the One who has never stopped loving you. Or never will.