15 Now the tax collectors and sinners were all gathering around to hear Jesus. 2 But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” 3 Then Jesus told them this parable: 4 “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? 5 And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders 6 and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ 7 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. 8 “Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins[a] and loses one. Doesn’t she light a lamp, sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? 9 And when she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost coin.’ 10 In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
The importance of people coming into the kingdom of God is crucial and the delight of heaven is palpable! Whether a lost sheep or a lost coin there is clarity about our need to make a careful, diligent search for what is lost. The religious people were upset that Jesus was talking and paying attention to the outcasts of His time. Jesus response was to show the need to search out those who are lost. Those who we may not think should fit in the kingdom – do! Our sensibilities are not Jesus’ sensibilities – He accepts all!
So how do I seek out the lost? Do I do so with a sense of urgency, diligence and care? Do I give up easily when reaching out to the lost – blaming them for whatever I find difficult.
Father break my heart for what breaks Yours – cause me to be soft hearted to people who are outside Your kingdom and place a fire and passion to reach them!
Written by Ps. Richard Botta