This morning we came downstairs to find Elfie hiding around the corner on a “huge” tower of cups. These cups proceeded to be dramatically knocked down and stomped on by the youngest Moye boys…..to which the older two started screaming and crying that he made Elfie fall. Perfect way to start a Sunday morning right? We didn’t get around to doing our story and craft until this evening since Sunday mornings are a wild storm of emotions, baths, hating dress clothes, and trying to get out the door in time. Is it that way in anyone else’s house? Anyway, our wonderful Elfie brought us a great story today from Luke 15:
15 The tax collectors and sinners were all gathering around to hear Jesus. 2 But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law were whispering among themselves. They said, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.”3 Then Jesus told them a story. 4 He said, “Suppose one of you has 100 sheep and loses one of them. Won’t he leave the 99 in the open country? Won’t he go and look for the one lost sheep until he finds it? 5 When he finds it, he will joyfully put it on his shoulders 6 and go home. Then he will call his friends and neighbors together. He will say, ‘Be joyful with me. I have found my lost sheep.’ 7 I tell you, it will be the same in heaven. There will be great joy when one sinner turns away from sin. Yes, there will be more joy than for 99 godly people who do not need to turn away from their sins.
8 “Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Won’t she light a lamp and sweep the house? Won’t she search carefully until she finds the coin? 9 And when she finds it, she will call her friends and neighbors together. She will say, ‘Be joyful with me. I have found my lost coin.’ 10 I tell you, it is the same in heaven. There is joy in heaven over one sinner who turns away from sin.”
This story was fun to talk about with the boys. The realization that when Johnathan accepted Christ into his heart a few months ago, heaven had a rockin party! He really liked this image. We talked a bit about how each time that someone turns from their sin and turns towards Jesus the angels to a “happy dance”. We got up and danced around like we thought the angels might be doing. We talked about celebrating this way when one of our friends or family accepts Jesus into their heart. We related back to the story a few days ago about baptism and talked about how when people get baptized we should all be dancing in our pews in joy for their commitment. The boys imagined that there must be a lot of partying in heaven…..fun place to be huh? 🙂
This story has a little bit different lesson that most of the ones we have been reading about. We spend so much time as parents teaching our kids, especially around this time of year, that it is better to think of others and give to others. We spend a lot of time trying to instill in them a servant’s heart and a passion for other people. And honestly I believe this story is about the power of one. One sheep, one person……us. If I was that one lost sheep Jesus would come for me and go through everything He went through even if it was just for my single soul. In the same way it is about you. It’s about our lost friend from playgroup. It’s about our coworker, the lady that makes our coffee, the server at lunch, the cop that pulls you over, the next door neighbor. It’s about all of us and at the same time about just one. What I wanted the boys to walk away knowing was that they are so deeply important to the God of the Universe that He would leave everything to come to their rescue. We are all that important…..that loved. Do I want them to be other’s focused and self-sacrificing and humble? Of course. But I also want them to grasp the awe that they are loved by their Maker in a never-ending, all-consuming, unconditional kind of way. I want them to wake up, brush their teeth, eat their
Cheerios, play, and sleep right here in the presence of God Almighty every day with His love living in the air we breathe. I want them to know how important each life is. I want them to be so encompassed by the Holy Spirit that when they find themselves outside of the covering of God’s love, in a dark place where sin abides, they would literally shutter from feeling His absence. They will find themselves in those places in life, it is inevitable. When they do, I want them to know without doubt who they are and who’s they are. And because they know that love so confidently, because they know who they are, then they will know what to do. When we understand our value, our identity in Christ, what confidence and strength there is to be found!
Growing up my dad did not really set a lot of rules for me if I was going out with friends. He would usually tell me one thing on my way out the door, “remember who you are and who’s you are”. Even into adulthood this saying has stayed with me and translated into so many areas of my life. As I have grown, and continue to do so, there are times in life when it is hard to see who I am. Am I mom? Wife? Friend? Servant? Slave? Employee? Does anyone really care? Who am I? This passage reminds me today that I am a cherished and valued child of the King. I am worth everything to Him and I am His. He loves me with an unfailing love. He tells me over and over again through scripture who I am, all I need to do is listen and focus on Him. I need to believe He is who He says He is……and because of that truth then I am who He says I am. I am who He says I am………..and so are you!