Lost and Found

Last week I got myself into a panic!  I own something that is very precious to me, which for a moment, I thought I had lost.  One item is a necklace that two people gave to me a few years ago.  Another item is a bracelet with matching earrings that another two people gave to me.  I have no idea the monetary value of these pieces of jewellery.  The cost is not what makes them precious; but rather, the value is in who gave them to me, and in why they gave them to me: because they love me, too!  The people who presented me with the gifts are treasures of my heart.  I love them dearly.  Hence, when I thought the items to be lost, deep disappointed weighed me down, and panic stirred in my emotions.  To tell the truth, I felt a bit sick!

Suddenly, an idea came to me.  I had been away for the weekend.  Knowing I wear these items every Sunday, I hoped that I had left them behind.  I sent a text to ask.  The minutes that passed seemed ages!  Suddenly a ding of the phone.  Oh, joy!  Ecstasy!  My precious necklace, bracelet and earrings, had been found!  No more words can adequately describe my relief.

I felt my face smiling all day long.  What had been lost was now found.  The joy stayed with me for days.  It was during these days that a thought came to me about how our Heavenly Father must feel when One of His children strays away.  He loves each of His children so very much.  He knows our frailties but loves us unconditionally anyway.  He plans for our future, daily gives us His own strength and peace, and shares in what gives us joy.  Then, sadly, one of His own turns away.  He or she loses sight of our Father’s perfect guidance, deciding instead, that they can make wiser choices.  To all intents and purposes, though still a child (once a child of God, always a child of God) that child is lost to Father’s perfect will for his or her life.

Can you imagine how Father must feel?  The child is so very precious to Him.  Valuable, not because of money, but because of the love-cost given by His own dear Son, Jesus, who died that every child of God could be adopted into His eternal family, with all its rights and privileges, never to be taken away.  We are created in God’s image; therefore, we know He feels sadness because we feel it.  Does He feel the weight of disappointment, like I did over my lost jewellery, when one of His sons or daughters drifts away?  Whatever the emotion of God, we know He speaks often of the love He has for His own.  Read Jeremiah 31:3, “I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love.  With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself.”

If anyone reading this happens to have drifted away, ask yourself right now, am I happier at this moment without Him, than I ever was with Him? Just go back.  You know He will always forgive.  You know He loves you immeasurably.  Just go back and experience great joy, together again.  

Putting On Her Socks

What are you squeamish about or what makes your skin crawl?  Everybody has something that makes them go wobbly all over.  For me, it’s touching feet.  I have no idea why but the thought of touching someone’s feet or having anyone touch mine is a horror.  A friend wanted to give me a pedicure as a gift some years ago.  The thought was so abhorrent that I had to come clean and tell her that I would rather remove my own tonsils with a fork.

Then the moment, that all my life I thought I could never handle, presented itself to me.  It was last week while my mother was in the hospital with a pulmonary embolism (doing so much better now).  She swung her legs to the side of the bed as she wanted to go to the bathroom.  I saw her look down at her bedroom shoes.  I moved nearer to her feet.  “My feet are so cold,” she said.  I noticed the socks in her shoes.  She began to lower her arm with great effort to bend down and get her socks.  That’s when it happened; a rush of compassion poured over me.  I heard myself say, “I’ll do that, Mom.”  I reached down, picked up her socks, and pulled them onto her bare feet and up over her ankles.  Then I slipped each bedroom shoe onto her feet.  I helped her stand, get steady, and walked with her to the bathroom.

As I stood outside the door waiting, the verse from Jeremiah 31:3 came to my mind, “I have loved you with an everlasting love; with great tenderness I have drawn you unto myself.”  That’s how Father loves me.  That’s how He loves  you.  He is forever bending down, pulling up our socks of need, helping us to stand steady on shaky legs of weakness.

“How deep the Father’s love for us,  How vast beyond all measure, That He should give His only Son, To make a wretch His treasure.”  Lyrics by Stuart Townsend