Parable of the Oldest Son

Psalm 1:3 — And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper (KJV).

I’m going to explain the latter part of this verse to you by using a parable of sorts. Keep in mind this is a fictional story, but I believe it will help you to better understand God’s blessings.

My oldest son Noah is very artistic. He loves to draw, build, and create. He has a brilliant imagination and thinks outside of the box. One of the activities he enjoys most is drawing. He can take a handful of blank paper and turn it into an elaborate picture book. Normally, when he finishes such a project, he brings it to my wife or me for our approval. He wants us to be proud.

One day I gave Noah a handful of paper. He returned to me about thirty minutes later and handed me his work. As I looked over the pages, he longingly looked up at me and asked, “What do you think, Daddy? Isn’t it great?”

He stood there waiting to receive my blessing, but I did not know what to say. The pages were still blank. He had not drawn anything. There was nothing for me to approve of. I handed the paper back to him and said, “Why don’t you go and finish, and then come back to me when you’re done.” He wanted me to bless something he did not do.

If you align yourself with Psalm 1:1-2, the third verse says whatever you do will prosper. God cannot bless what you do not do. Many people want the blessings of God, but they don’t do anything to merit them. He does not owe us anything, nor does He prosper us because we have a sense of entitlement.

God’s blessings are for everyone, but they’re also conditional. He can only prosper what you do, but He does not approve of just anything. As my wife says, “Stop asking God to bless what you’re doing, and begin doing what it is He’s blessing.”

Deuteronomy 15:5 — You will receive this blessing if you are careful to obey all the commands of the Lord your God (NLT).

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