God's 'GPS'

“who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.”

2 Corinthians 1:22

What did we ever do before the invention of the GPS (Global Positioning System). If you are at all like me you got lost a lot more frequently. What a comfort and peace of mind it is to know that pretty much anywhere in the world now you can make your way from point A to point B by simply plugging in the address of where you want to go in a GPS unit and in a few seconds you have directions at your finger tips. You don’t even need to know where you are at any longer as the latest technology has that built right in.

Are you aware that God has placed within each of us a GPS unit, we were hard-wired from the factory with one you could say. God knows right where you are at today loved one and He will move heaven and earth to find us when we lose our way. And for the child of God it only gets better because God has even given us His Spirit to be with us and in us and that is never more comforting than when we feel lost.

In Luke 15 we find three very interesting stories Jesus tells that reveal the love of our Heavenly Father for us. First, Jesus tells us the story of the lost sheep. Sheep are not the brightest animals known to man and they can be very foolish and wander off from the fold subjecting themselves to much harm. The good shepherd Jesus shares about in this story has one hundred sheep but when one foolishly wanders off the shepherd leaves the ninety-nine and goes after the one. That’s good news for me and you who are prone to do foolish things in this life. Thank God He knows where to find us and He comes looking for us and in love picks us up and carries us home so we can learn to trust Him. Not only is the lost sheep overjoyed to be found and brought home. Oh the comfort the remaining ninety-nine sheep would have in knowing that if ever they were to wander off their good shepherd would come look for them too.

The next story Jesus tells is of a woman who has ten silver coins and looses one of them. It says she won’t rest until she turns her house upside down to find the lost coin and when she does find it she calls her neighbors to celebrate with her for this coin which was lost but now is found. The coin became lost due to someones carelessness and yet no matter the reason the search was on to recover it. Good news for those of us who have acted carelessly in this life. The point of the story is this, God searches not just for the foolish but also the careless too. If God cares for ornate objects like coins, how much more does He care about me and you! That’s the message Jesus is communicating in Luke’s gospel.

And last but sure not least we have one of the most known stories in all the Bible, the story of the prodigal son. Acting in total rebellion against his father the son demands his inheritance before his father is even dead which means in essence the son wished his father were. In love yet sorrowful, the father complies with the sons wishes and his youngest child takes the money and runs as far from home as he possibly can to a far away city and squanders all he has on prodigal living. He wastes his life on sex, drinking and any and every vile practice known to man until he has nothing left and finds himself taking a job feeding pigs just to survive. Being a Jew there was no lower a job that a man could take. Humiliated by his life’s choices, sitting there in a pig pen the son comes to his senses realizing he has sinned against both God and his father.

As he determines to go home with his tail tucked between his legs he thinks the worst of how the conversation will go with his dad. He’s thinking he’s going to get the “I told you so” talk from his father. What the son didn’t know was each day he was away the father paced his property hoping against hope that his son would return home and when he saw his son far off coming for home the father ran to his son. This Dad didn’t wait for his son to eat crow or swallow humble pie. This loving father ran and embraced his son, wept on his neck, kissed him and held him close. The father rejoiced that this son of his who was lost and now found, calls for a celebration. Yet, when his oldest son heard the news he wasn’t happy, actually jut the opposite, he was angry and would not come in to the party. Though the older brother thought he was better than his younger sibling, they actually were both guilty of the same sin. They both rebelled against their fathers wishes and both had attitudes of resentment and a lack of respect yet in the case of the older brother the father still went out and pleaded with his older son inviting him to have a change of heart and to join in the celebration. The Father is always searching!

The take away in all these stories is Jesus telling us that there are two things that are constant. First,  something is lost, be it due to foolishness or carelessness or even rebellion, and two, no matter what, someone is searching for what is lost. And that someone is God. No matter what the reason, God is always searching for what is lost and likewise He is always celebrating when what was lost is found. Are you aware you can be part of the celebration today, loved one? The bible tells us that the angels of heaven rejoice over one sinner who repents and turns to God. Open your heart to God if you never have and be found and let the rejoicing begin. Be the reason for the party in heaven today. If you already are found today then why not join the Good Shepherd in the search for those who are lost and share the love of Jesus with them. Point them towards home today loved one, point them to Jesus knowing…

“For You, Lord, are good, and ready to forgive, And abundant in mercy to all those who call upon You.”

Psalm 86:5

I LOVE YOU!

Michael Osthimer

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