LK 15: 1-10


Since the advent of community Facebook pages, announcements abound regarding lost items, property and pets. Our community is so active in tracing the whereabouts of lost wallets or keys. Neighbors join together in locating lost pets, particularly stowaway kittens and dogs. But when a neighbor announced that his pet Burmese python escaped from its cage, all the neighbors stayed indoors and refused to join the search party!


What is the value of a single lost sheep when you still have ninety-nine in your barn or enclosure? What is the value of a single coin when there are nine other spare coins in your purse? These questions must have been running in the mind of the listeners of the Lord Jesus as he narrated his parables. Why waste time looking when what you lost is not indispensable, is not irreplaceable?


An owner, a responsible and conscientious one, develops an affective link with his property. For some people, what they own reminds them of some special person or event in their lives. This is what we call the “sentimental value” of a thing. For others, what they own is a crystallization of a hard-earned dream, one for which they spent not only money, but blood and tears. To part with such an item will be extremely hard, since it reminds them of their own struggles and hardships.


But the Lord Jesus’ parables elevate the mind and heart to a higher plane, a deeper realization. God is the seeker of lost things, of lost pets, of lost property. The lost one is not a mere object of his enjoyment or a reminder of his achievement. The lost one is a creature, and yet also a cherished and beloved “child.” We are the lost sheep, we are the lost coin. In his heart, God cannot part with any single person he has created simply and supremely because, he loves each and every one of us.


Sometimes we do not feel special because others do not treat us well. We wallow in self-pity because we think we are a failure in life. We are not affirmed by the words and actions of the people around us. This world is an expert in hurting people, in casting them aside, in dropping them like a hot potato. But we do know, God is not like that. He simply loves you for who you are; and you are special to him because you belong to him, however flawed or sinful you are; you are his “child.”


This Sunday, as you read the Gospel alone, thank the Lord that he is interested in bringing you home, in bringing you close to his heart. Let him find you waiting for his rescue, for his redemption.