“If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them gets lost, what will he do? Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others in the wilderness and go to search for the one that is lost until he finds it? And when he has found it, he will joyfully carry it home on his shoulders. When he arrives, he will call together his friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep.’ In the same way, there is more joy in heaven over one lost sinner who repents and returns to God than over ninety-nine others who are righteous and haven’t strayed away!” Luke 15:4-7 (NLT)
Brandon had been following the little fox for some time. He didn’t want to catch it, just to see where it lived and if there were any more of them. But the little fox had “out-foxed” him and he had lost track of it. As he turned to head back to the campsite, he realized that while he was following the fox, the sun had begun to set. He knew he better find the trail back right now. He climbed down the hillside, through the brambles and underbrush, searching for the trail before the light faded completely.
From his vantage point on the hillside, he could see the trail meandering below. He knew if he could just get to the trail before total darkness set in, he would be OK. He quickly made his way down the hillside and, just as the last rays of orange had faded from the sky, set foot on the trail. Now he was safe – or so he thought. Once the twilight turned to inky black, nothing seemed the same as it was when he came up. He stumbled over rocks and turned his ankle in a pothole. A large evergreen blocked his way and he had to feel his way around it. He didn’t remember the trail having this many twists and turns. Just as he was about to yell for help, he saw a lantern swinging off in the distance. His dad had come looking for him! He took Brandon’s hand and they negotiated the dark trail together with the help of the light from the lantern. Before long, they were back at camp, safe and warm and welcomed.
Have you ever been in a dark place or outside when the night set in and weren’t really sure where everything was? Obstacles seem so much bigger in the dark and sometimes what you think is the right path, isn’t. Things get in our way that we didn’t know were there. It can be kind of scary, can’t it?
Imagine that it was your mom or dad who chased after the fox and then couldn’t find their way back. Wouldn’t you go looking for them? Wouldn’t you want to take their hand and bring them back to the right trail? This is how Jesus feels about your dad or your mom. He knows that they kind of got lost when they set out to chase that fox. He knows that they never meant to get so far from home or so far from Him. He knows that they are having a real hard time finding their way back to the trail. He is waiting for them to call for His help.
“… If you are walking in darkness, without a ray of light, trust in the Lord and rely on your God.” Isaiah 50:10 (NLT)
Even if they don’t know they are lost, even if it seems like they are not looking for that trail home, Jesus still goes looking for them. Do you know why? Because He loves them. And because He is hearing the prayers lifted to Him on their behalf. He hears you when you pray for your mom or dad to find their way home. He knows you are worried about them being out there in the dark all alone. Jesus promises to go after them and search for them. He promises to bring the light of His truth with Him so they can see the way. He promises to take them by the hand and lead them on the right path.
Your word is like a lamp for my feet and a light for my way. Psalm 119:105 (ICB)
Jesus wants your mom or dad to find their way home even more than you do. He loves them so much that He gave His life for them. He wants to bless them with the promise of eternal life. He wants to see your family restored and rebuilt on the solid foundation of love and reverence for Him. He wants to answer your prayers.
Sweet Jesus, we pray for all the lost moms and dads who are out there wandering in the darkness. Go after these people we love. Shine your light around them and show them the right path. Take them by the hand and lead them home, to You and to the family that prays for them. May our prayers help light their way and guide them. Thank You Lord that we know nothing is too hard for You and that You are working, even now, to bring them home. With praise and thanksgiving, we ask in Your name. Amen.
The people who walk in darkness will see a great light. For those who live in a land of deep darkness, a light will shine. Isaiah 9:2 (NLT)
Kim, a stander in Nebraska
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Unless otherwise noted, scripture quoted are from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2010 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.