Last Sunday, in the Bible reading plan Larry and I are using this year, the scripture was Luke 15. For as long as I can remember, I have heard the stories of the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the lost son. But that same day the story took on new meaning as we experienced it ourselves.
Sunday night, Larry could not find his college ring. At first, he checked the pocket in his pants and coat. Since he had been at church and meetings all day, the possibilities for where it could be were endless. I thought maybe I had accidentally brushed it into the drawer when I was putting away the t-shirts, but after the drawer was emptied, there was still no ring. Larry searched under the dresser, behind the dresser, and any other place that I said, “Have you checked there?” He even went through all of the trash cans. Reluctantly, he discontinued the search for the evening.
The next morning as Larry was leaving for work, he picked up a piece of paper with a telephone number he needed to call and there was his ring…right where he usually puts it each evening. There was much rejoicing in knowing that his college ring had been “found”.
Can you imagine if there was that much joy in finding such a little thing the celebration that occurs in heaven when we “find” God’s way, repent and are ready to listen, trust, and obey? Now that’s something worth searching for.
The Parable of the Lost Sheep
5 And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders 6 and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ 7 I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.
The Parable of the Lost Coin
8 “Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Does she not light a lamp, sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? 9 And when she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost coin.’ 10 In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
The Parable of the Lost Son
31 “‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. 32 But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’”