The Other Son

One day, I was speaking with a heartbroken father about the death of his son. Tears came to his eyes as he spoke of the boy’s life and accomplishments, of which he was rightly proud.

I listened carefully and with sadness.

After a time, the man also spoke of his other son, whose life had comprised one struggle after another. It was obvious to me that this older boy had been a disappointment to his father.

At one point, the man paused, looked away, and softly but clearly said something quite disturbing.

“The wrong son died.”

While I still felt compassion for this man’s terrible loss, my heart really ached for his surviving son.

How difficult it must be to live as the one who, in his father’s eyes, is expendable.

3 thoughts on “The Other Son

  1. Judy in judysworld

    The older son – yes, but daughters too – I envy both of those children because I lost my father at six by suicide. I was, in a way, expendible to him, though I know that it is much more complex than that. I found him in a new way in that same Father who had been watching longingly for me on the horizon the whole time. At 25 I inherited a beautiful ring and that made the Prodigal’s story suddenly very personal to me. God the Father had put it on my hand, a signatory that I was someone of great value to Him.


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