A post from several years ago about the love God has for us.
12What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in search of the one that went astray? 13And if he finds it, truly, I say to you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that never went astray. 14So it is not the will of my Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish. Matthew 18:12-14
Several years ago I went through a really rough time over the course of a few months. Failed relationships, broken friendships, and health issues with some family members. To be honest it was a lot to go through, and I struggled emotionally for some time. During the middle of this extended series of crises I came across an absolutely brilliant statement. I found it in Oswald Chambers classic work My Utmost For His Highest. It is from the devotional for October 4th which is entitled The Vision and The Verity.
Is it not penetrating to realize that God knows where we live, and the kennels we crawl into! He will hunt us up like a lightening flash. No human being knows human beings as God does.
Even now as I type out Chambers words I am moved. The thought of God hunting us down overwhelms me. God knows where we are at all times, He knows when we are trying to hide and when we are running and this fact soothes and terrifies me.
This passage today tells of the same dedication of God. It speaks of that very same nature of God to seek us out when we wander off course. As one that likes to color far outside the lines and do my own thing I take comfort in this. It reassures me to know that God will not give up on me just because I am so stubborn or too slow to get it at times.
While these words are comforting they also serve to strongly convict me. If we are going to be like God and be about leaving His footprints then we need to be displaying this same characteristic in our own lives. We have to be willing to give people second, and third, and nineteenth, and seventy first, and one thousand five hundred thirty fourth chances. A phrase that I have overheard many people use lately is “I am done”, meaning they are finished with dealing with a certain person and are moving on from that friendship or relationship. The settings in which I have heard this said have each been different and I am sure that various hurt feelings or deliberate malicious actions or words have precipitated the speaking of those three words. Nevertheless, as I read Jesus’ words here and study them for awhile I am struck by the notion that Jesus would have never said this to one of His disciples. The reality is Peter was a moron and most of us would have kicked him to the side just a few days into the venture, yet Jesus continues to stay with him and mold him and change him. I am sure the other eleven had their own problems and ways of being annoying. Jesus stuck with them, just as he sticks with us. We in turn need to stick with those God has placed among our fellowship and community. In doing so we will truly leave His footprints.