Young children have an interesting perspective when trying to learn the rules of game playing. Often times they improvise with their own understanding. When one of girls was three, I was teaching her the finer points of Hide-and-Seek. I would send her off to hide as her part and then I would begin the search. She understood the hiding part - no problem. However, when I would get close to her, she would jump out from her hiding spot with a loud “Surprise!”
I would explain the rules again. “Stay hidden and I will find you.” But every time she would jump out before I could actually get to her.
“Houston, we have a problem!” She was having the time of her life, and I was getting frustrated that she was not getting the rules of the game. All of the sudden it dawned on me. She was simply celebrating the thrill of being pursued and the joy of being found.
Jesus told parables of the shepherd who risked the ninety-nine to find the one sheep that was lost and the woman who searched her house from top to bottom to find her lost coin. In both cases, a celebration followed the finding.
But the crown jewel parable is of the younger son who who came to the awakened realization of his lostness and that being found is the desired, longed-for preference.
1-Take a moment and reflect on the time in your life when you were made aware that you were lost - that’s humbling.
2-Take a moment and remember the joy of being found - that’s a time to be grateful.
3-Take a moment to pray for one you know who is missing the peace and joy of being found - that’s your calling.