Wednesday, April 3, 2013

I Once Was Lost

My Sister-In-Law is the editor and publisher of the Courier-Times, serving Sutherland, Hershey and Paxton. She is an incredible writer, inspiring woman of God, and a vocal artist who will bring chills to your spine. This is her Easter week column:

One of my favorite hymns is "Amazing Grace." In this ever-popular and uplifting hymn are found the words "I once was lost, but now am found, 'twas blind but now I see," a strong reminder about the human need for a Savior and spiritual guidance.
Recently my husband was at an auction, and received two stone-like angel figurines, one laying down, and one sitting. It seems a buyer at the auction had purchased a box of items, and these statues were in the box. On the bottom of each angel statue was written words to the effect, "Stolen from the grave of ---- at the Sutherland Cemetery", and some other verbiage including the date of 2006. This man who purchased the box was interested in seeing the angels make their way back to the proper grave at the cemetery, and since my husband is from Sutherland, he became the courier of the items to help them find their rightful home.
After we contacted some of the family members, they joyously came to retrieve the lost angel figurines, so they could be placed back on the grave stone of their loved ones.
There is great joy in finding things we've lost - like our keys. There is greater joy when something that has been taken from us is returned. I think the greatest joy, however is when lost people are found... greater joy in Heaven and on earth.
I am reminded of the story of the Prodigal Son... the one who demanded his inheritance while his father was still alive, and left his family to go have some fun. After a period of wild living, when all his money and all his 'friends' were gone, he realized that he was hungry and destitute  and might at least find enough forgiveness to become one of his father's servants.
Like the prodigal son, most of the lost don't know they are lost until they run into trouble. The trouble then becomes the catalyst for their seeking, and being found.
Being 'found' in this case is more than a geographical change. It is more than a return to an original location. It also involves a change in the behaviors that cause the person to become lost. That's what we call repentance.
The Christian story of Jesus' death and resurrection are a story of victory over the 'lostness' of this world.
No mater what crime... no matter what ugly thing... no matter what evil a person may have done in their prodigal times... the spiritual penalty has been paid in the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus... that's what we celebrate at Easter... that Jesus died once for all... even for the soldiers who were beating Him and driving nails through his feet and hands... even the people we don't like. His was a gift for our benefit, because of love... real love... eternal love.
Everybody has a prodigal side, and God recognizes that. The Bible says "all have sinned and come short of the glorify of God." (Rom 3:23), and again, "The wages of sin are death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord," (Rom. 6:23).
Everybody has been 'lost', but the good news is, nobody has to stay that way. If you're feeling 'lost' in life, or feeling like the prodigal and are afraid to return, remember there is always a way home through Jesus.
Thanks for stopping by. The coffee is always on.

ShareThis