(This is the second in a short series based on the parable of the Prodigal Son in Luke 15. It’s written from the perspective of the elder brother, who we don’t hear about until the end, but who probably had other things he wanted to say. The first letter can be read here.)
Thanks for your letter. Congratulations on the football – I’m sorry that I couldn’t be there to watch you, but we’ve been a bit busy in the last few weeks. I was glad to hear that your mother had found her coin at last, even though she did have to turn the house upside down – it must have been awful to lose part of her wedding gift.
Yes, I’m afraid the rumours are true – it is him (that’s why we’ve been busy; there’s a lot more for me do do these days). We’ve been hearing all sorts of things about my so-called brother; he’s a disgrace to the family. And of course, there are always some people who are ready to spread bad news: “have you heard what he’s done now?”
Apparently he’s becoming quite a playboy, staying in the poshest hotels, being seen in all the nightclubs, getting invited to all the best parties, with a different girl by his side every night. I can’t see his money lasting much longer; but we also hear that he spends quite a bit of time in the casinos, so maybe he’s had a bit of luck there, too. No, I’m not jealous (much!) – I’m quite happy here on the farm, working every hour God sends, getting home late at night too tired to even think about going out.
Seriously, though, all this news is a real blow to Dad – I thought he’d got over it, but it’s obviously still as painful now as it was on the day it all started. And every fresh bit of news, every rumour, is just rubbing salt in the wound. Of course, we haven’t heard a word from my brother himself, he’s cut himself off from his family. I still think we’re better off without him, despite all the extra work on the farm; but I don’t say this out loud because I don’t think Dad agrees with me.
(Based on Luke 15:8-10,13b)