When I was still afar off, my father saw me. He ran and embraced me and kissed me. I started to say “I have sinned against you” but he would not let me finish; and he celebrated me, with me.
God is Love. God is infinite love. We can betray God, mock God- nothing we can do can put us beyond the bounds of God’s love.
Be perfect, as your father in heaven is perfect- that is, be perfectly and idiosyncratically yourself, as God knitted you together in your mother’s womb. God saw what God had made, and it was very good.
Rumi saw it: You suppose that you’re the trouble, But you’re really the cure. You suppose that you’re the lock on the door, But really you’re the key that opens it. It’s too bad that you want to be someone else. You don’t see your own face, your own beauty. Yet, no one’s face is more beautiful than yours.
It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
I love this prayer from the Church of England:
Father of all,
we give you thanks and praise,
that when we were still far off
you met us in your Son and brought us home.
Dying and living, he declared your love,
gave us grace, and opened the gate of glory.
May we who share Christ’s body live his risen life;
we who drink his cup bring life to others;
we whom the Spirit lights give light to the world.
Keep us firm in the hope you have set before us,
so we and all your children shall be free,
and the whole earth live to praise your name;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.