There is an old picture of Jesus that I particularly like. The scene is on the side of a mountain with a dangerous ledge. A lamb has wandered out there and is stuck in some thorny brambles. Precariously close to death, the lamb is bleating and fearful and Jesus is leaning over him rescuing him.
This is the picture of the Good Shepherd who leaves the ninety-nine sheep to go after the one who is lost. (See Luke 15:4-7) In the story Jesus tells he says; “And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing.” (Verse 5) I think I would be more likely to scold it and say something like; I hope you learned your lesson and you’ll think twice before ever wandering off like this again. Or maybe; see I told you so – now will you listen to me?
Yes, those are the things I would likely say – unless I was that little lamb. In that case I would gratefully be rescued and be oh so glad that the Shepherd cared enough to come after me and gently carry me back to safety. Well, at one time I was that little lamb. Maybe at one time you were too. But perhaps you are out on that ledge right now?
The Good Shepherd is still in the search and rescue business. Start calling out to him and let him know you want to be found. He has left the ninety-nine and he is looking for YOU. There will be no “I told you so”. His shoulders are safe, warm and secure. Come home.
Try listening to this audio version