I heard one of the most familiar scriptures in worship this week: The Parable of the Lost Sheep. “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ 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." Luke 15:4-7.
In the beginning of my walk with Christ, four words in this parable made a very big impression on me. In those four words, I began to know God's indescribable love. They showed me just how much God loves me, how precious I am to him. Those four words—until he find it. Those four words tell me that no matter how far I've fallen away, no matter how sinful and defiant I am, Jesus will pursue me, look for me, search for me in the deepest of wildernesses to bring me back into his loving, caring arms. Until means that he will NEVER GIVE UP on me! Never. He will search UNTIL HE FINDS ME! Everytime! I'm humbled by and grateful for how deeply he loves me.
It brought to mind a poem I wrote a couple of years ago in response to Psalm 119:105-112. I'd like to share it again here for you. Enjoy!
Light the Way
O LORD, You ways are superior
Your thoughts incomprehensible
and mysterious –
still somehow accessible
to those who hear Your Voice
and praise Your Name.
In my heart and mind
You’ve revealed Your Word,
Your will, Your plan,
in such a way
that I can understand.
You’ve unlocked Your wisdom
Your Spirit illumines the way
as I determine to follow Your footsteps,
every hour of every day.
Sometimes I’m bruised from falling
Pricked by thorns when I go astray and
You guide me back to the narrow path
When I cry out for grace
in Jesus’ name.
You never leave me to suffer
nor condemn my miserable, sorry soul
though I’ve flaunted my defiance for all to see.
You won’t leave me in my arrogance
for You’ve given in Your Holy Word
that You will search the wilderness
until You, the LORD, recover me.
I am Your child, Your follower
saved by Your love and grace alone
All that I possess I received from You
I have nothing of my own to give
except my heart, my soul,
my willing praise,
and the life I live.