Father, do I have the heart of a shepherd, looking for the lost wherever I am?
Read: Luke 15:1-7(NIV)
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.
We live in uncertain times. For many, their first inclination is to gather in and keep what they have…to keep their families safe and provided for above all else. Jesus also lived in uncertain times. He knew what would eventually happen, what had to happen for the salvation of mankind, and he used that knowledge to spur himself on to go out and find all the lost sheep he could. He had a core group of disciples he poured into individually, but he knew his ultimate work was outside that group. Jesus went places most of us would never consider. He put himself in harm’s way to fulfill the work his Father had given him to do. Whether it was a big crowd or a prostitute who poured valuable perfume over his feet, Jesus knew no boundaries…if there was a lost sheep to be found, he pursued them! He didn’t worry about a fully vetted plan, knowing who/what/when…he just went. Wherever he was, THAT was the ultimate opportunity to find the least, the last, the lost. It’s the same for us today. Wherever we are, THAT is the ultimate opportunity to look for lost sheep.
Are you playing it safe? Have you forgotten that being a disciple of Jesus is risky…and can produce great gain for God’s kingdom? Step out of your box this week.
Lord give me boldness and show me the one lost sheep that is in my world today.