Lost and Found
Last Saturday, I took our dog, Rory, out for her morning walk at about 6:00. As we came to the front of our apartment complex, I saw an old SUV slowly pull in, pause for a few moments, and then park near the leasing office. The SUV was unfamiliar and in disrepair, so I decided to wait and see who got out. It was a middle-aged couple, looking kind of unkempt, whom I had never seen before. They began walking around somewhat aimlessly, their eyes scanning the address numbers of the buildings. I thought this was slightly suspicious, so I waited even longer. Suddenly their pace increased, and they made a beeline for the central commons. I followed nonchalantly from a distance. Finally, they made a sharp right turn and approached the patio of a first-floor apartment. At this point I couldn’t see what they were doing. About a minute later, they came back around the corner with a young man who was very obviously under the influence of some substance—he was their son. The father was supporting him, helping him walk, and the mother had her left arm wrapped tightly around his waist and her right hand on his chest. The three slowly made their way back to the SUV. The parents carefully lifted their son into the back seat and drove away.
We are children of our heavenly Father. Even so, we are prone to wander from his kingdom. We do harm to ourselves physically, emotionally, and spiritually in the name of pleasure and personal autonomy. We fall into danger and become too desensitized to realize it.
But God has sent his Son to seek and save the lost. Jesus pursues us wherever we have strayed. He rescues us from the dangers we have foolishly entertained. He finds us, binds up our wounds, and carries us home. I am grateful that Jesus continues to do this even for me.
The posture of those parents carrying their son home reminded me of this stanza from the hymn “The King of Love My Shepherd Is”:
Perverse and foolish oft I strayed,
But yet in love He sought me;
And on His shoulders gently laid
And home rejoicing brought me.