Friday, February 24, 2006

Lost and Found

I lost my wedding ring yesterday. Thursday afternoon, I and one of my deacons went on a pastoral visit to a family in the community—a mother and six kids. The mom is the girlfriend of Carlos, whom I met in the jail a few weeks ago. That was the last time I remembered seeing the ring. After that, I went to the store to pick up some groceries. I noticed it was gone as soon as I got home. I was inconsolable! I searched my car, my pockets, the ground around my house. It was nowhere to be found. ‘Could it be at supermarket? At that family’s house?' I had been playing with the kids at the house. Crazy thoughts were going through my mind—like, maybe one of the kids slipped it off my finger while we were holding hands praying.

This morning I asked my kids to pray that Jesus would help me find my ring. My son prayed. When I arrived at the church building this morning, I retraced my steps back to my office. Nothing. Then, I reached into my computer bag with my left hand to pull out my Bible. (This is the black bag that I carry around with me everywhere I go. It’s generally never more than six feet away from me.) I noticed that the inside of the bag rubbed against my ring finger as I pulled my hand out. I thought, ‘Maybe the bag pulled the ring off my finger.’ I opened the bag and there it was.

Do you know someone who is lost? Separated from God? In a dark, black place? Perhaps yourself? The lost person is of extreme value to God—more valuable than my wedding ring to me. The Lord is not far away. Make that phone call. Send that email. Invite them to church. Give them a ride. Ask Jesus to forgive and restore that person—especially if it’s you.

“And when [he] finds it, [he] calls [his] friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost [ring].’ In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents” (Luke 15:9–10).


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