Wal-mart doesn’t carry sheep … Sunday, September 15

English: A lost sheep, behind Rosemary plants,...

Would you believe that this guy is worth more to od than the sufferings of Calvary?

The Gospel of the Lord … Luke 15:1-10

Tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to listen to Jesus, but the Pharisees and scribes began to complain, saying, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” So to them he addressed this parable. “What man among you having a hundred sheep and losing one of them would not leave the ninety-nine in the desert and go after the lost one until he finds it? And when he does find it, he sets it on his shoulders with great joy and, upon his arrival home, he calls together his friends and neighbors and says to them, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep.’ I tell you, in just the same way there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who have no need of repentance.

“Or what woman having ten coins and losing one would not light a lamp and sweep the house, searching carefully until she finds it? And when she does find it, she calls together her friends and neighbors and says to them, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found the coin that I lost.’ In just the same way, I tell you, there will be rejoicing among the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”

~

Have you ever lost something and then went looking for it? It’s a hassle, isn’t it? It takes time when we’re pressed for time and it takes effort when we’re tired. When we don’t have the time or the energy we have to ask ourselves if the thing lost is worth finding. Maybe, if the time and effort amount to to much, we’re better off forgetting about the lost item. After all, we can always get another one.

Jesus took a lot of time and put forth great effort in finding you and me. The time involved was a 33 year life on earth within the confines of time, plus an eternity of love outside of time. So just how valuable are these lost sheep and coins? Well, they’re obviously of more value to God than the time and eternity involved. They are also worth more than nails, suffering, blood lost, thirst, hunger, beating, tears, agony in prayer, being tormented by Satan, and being abused and/or ignored by the sheep and the coins. He obviously puts great value in these items.

So just how much appreciation do the sheep and coins show for all His effort? And the real answer is: Never enough. Even when we do our best to show honest gratitude we fall short. This doesn’t mean we stop trying to show our gratitude, giving up because it amounts to so little. It does mean that we try as hard as we know how and that we take to heart the fact that for Him anything the sheep and coins do in return is precious. And that’s because He puts so much value on us.

I have a cat. Well, actually I’ve got eight. Some one was kind enough to dump a new one a few weeks back, upping the ante. Every once in a while one comes up missing. So I walk around the place looking. I’ve got lots of physical, health, problems. It’s not always easy to take that walk looking. Sometimes I’m to tired, other times there’s pain involved. But I go looking. I go looking because my cats are worth my effort. I can’t go out and buy another Hemingway or Daddy Cat or Sylvester or … Sure, if one disappeared and I never saw it again there are always other cats. But those aren’t MY cats. (At least not yet.)

Jesus could always make another sheep or coin. He is, after all, the Creator. But those new sheep and coins wouldn’t be YOU or ME. There’s only one you and me. As grand as Heaven is there are no Wal-Marts. Jesus isn’t just going to go to the store and buy another one. He’d rather go to Calvary looking for the originals.

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Published in: on September 15, 2013 at 3:00 am  Comments Off on Wal-mart doesn’t carry sheep … Sunday, September 15  
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