I am going to write a little about my wife.

I am amazed about her likes and dislikes in many areas but one amazement is the fact that she likes reality crime shows like “48 Hours”, “Dateline” and “20/20”.

Maybe you are familiar with this type of show.

I am not a fan.

I think she still loves me though.

The formula is usually this.  A crime is committed [often in a little community] and if not a little community, the crime is committed by the least likely people to commit a crime.  It is usually a murder.  The community is shocked that the crime has occurred.  The environment is serene, often Christian, and the family involved is a fine upstanding family.

Then the dark side comes out.

The family involved has activities that no one is aware of.  In fact, no one would be aware of these “dark” activities if a crime had not occurred and now law enforcement is poking around in everyone’s lives.  The pattern of these shows is large life insurance policies are taken out before the murder is committed [motive].  Affairs have occurred and jealousies abound or damaged relationships [motive].  Gambling is often uncovered with massive amounts of debt [motive].  Drug or alcohol activity has happened with bad behavior and maybe debt [motive].

You get the picture.

The fine upstanding community is rocked by a fine upstanding family that is in the middle of a mess.  It all seems to conclude with a murder.

The murder has to be investigated, the murderer has to be found and a large portion of the show is about the trial.

Justice has to be meted out.

Someone has to pay.

I write all this to set up the last chapter of AHA.  Pastor Idleman has spent 99% of his book considering the prodigal son. This son has gone to the “distant country” and has turned his back on his father and his family [his God].

But what about the older son who has stayed home?

That guy has “toed the line”.  He has worked hard and been faithful to the father and his father’s holdings.

Then the prodigal returns and gets the hug, the new clothes and the fatted calf.


I don’t think so.

Why do we see such anguish from victims of crime on the reality crime shows?  They want someone to pay.  The older son wants someone to pay.

And the prodigal doesn’t pay.

This last week we will explore this fascinating dynamic.  “Buckle up”  we may discover Awakening, Honesty and Action.

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