Have you ever lost something? Maybe your keys, some money, your wallet or a cell phone?
I remember one time when I lost my cell phone, or, rather I dropped it down a sinkhole.
I was gutted. This was back in the days of flip phones, so I was able to shrug it off and buy a new one without too much drama. But, that feeling of losing or misplacing something can rock us to the core.
Depending on how attached we are to the item we lose, it can be a feeling which is not easy to shake.
Until a few years ago, I’d never really connected the dots when it came to how God genuinely feels regarding people who are lost.
At the time, I was teaching through Luke with some students and – as part of his testimony – one of them shared from Luke 15.
He gave a very simple, but profound, message on the fact that you and I are the lost sheep, the lost coin and the lost son mentioned in that chapter.
That realisation has actually stuck with me for over a decade now.
Though, for many, Easter seems to have become simply about Easter eggs and egg hunts, ultimately, it’s of course about remembering what Jesus did on the cross for you and for me.
A reminder I’d like to leave with you is our part in Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross. Our sin is what made us the lost coin, the lost sheep and the lost son which Jesus referred to. It separated us from God.
This Easter, as we take time to reflect on the work of the cross, may we never lose sight of – or forget – the magnitude of what it was Christ did on our behalf in defeating death, hell, sin and the grave.
Thank you Jesus.
In the parable of the lost, or prodigal, son, God is represented by the father. With that in mind, there’s something the father does that I find interesting.
He sets his dignity aside to meet his sons exactly where they’re at.
Yes, that’s right, both sons. The first is the more obvious, and the one almost everyone points out.
The father ran to meet the prodigal son. He hugs and embraces that young man, restoring him to the position of son.
It’s such a picture of those who have been without Jesus, or who have even walked away from Him.
And now, our Father brings us into the family by sending His Son to die on the cross for our sins.
Jesus, similarly, set aside His dignity for us!
And yet, as mentioned, there’s actually a second time the father from the parable of the prodigal son sets aside his dignity – and that is with his first-born son.
The passage tells us the first born son won’t enter the house, and so the father goes out to meet him where he is.
This son has been obedient all his life – he’s always done whatever the father told him to do.
But, there is bitterness, anger and frustration in this son.
Aren’t there times when we can all identify with the son who ran away from home? Perhaps we even view that as the essence of a ‘good’ testimony.
We either ran away from, or never knew, God and yet He reached out and got hold of our lives.
The point here is that – in His mercy – Jesus too meets us where we are at when we call out to Him.
A question I’d also like us to consider is, do we identify at all with the first born son? There are times I’m sure we do.
When Jesus was speaking, he probably had the Pharisees and Scribes in mind.
But, who are the ‘modern’ Pharisees and Scribes? A challenging thought is to consider they would possibly be you and I.
They would be the ones who know the Word of God, and yet stand on the side judging, condemning or even wagging the finger at those who simply ran away from home.
Does that sound like the older son?
In light of these thoughts, I’m reminded of Romans 2:4.
“…do you presume on the riches of His kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?” (ESV).
Let’s remember that we only came to the Lord in the first place because He was kind to us – sending His Son to die for us.
Shouldn’t we – in turn – also be kind to those around us?
Shouldn’t we show that same kindness to others, so that, in Him, they might see the love of God at work in us?
“…but God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” – Romans 5:8 (ESV).
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About the author
Jake Wilmoth is the Assistant Pastor at Calvary Chapel, Hamilton. He has always had a heart for the church. He and his wife Tecla love helping people in the Waikato community – either through food or building projects.
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