Marta and I went for a walk on Saturday morning. About halfway through, our walk was interrupted by distant shouts of “I see ‘em. I see em!” I looked up to see two little blondies turn the corner of the block and come running straight toward us as fast as they could, hugging us and shouting, “Nana! Papaw!” The girls knew we were on a walk that morning, they knew the paths we travel and they convinced their mom to go with them and see if they could find us. They found us all right and except for some neighbors who may have been still trying to sleep, it wasn’t really an interruption at all. I love those girls.
Their little search party reminded me of several passages of scripture that speak to the way the Lord looks for us. In Luke chapter 15 Jesus who has been scolded by the Pharisees for “eating with sinners” attempts to share with the religious leaders His passion for seeking those who need His touch. He speaks of a shepherd with one hundred sheep who would “leave the ninety-nine in the open pasture and go after the one which is lost until He finds it. He speaks of a woman with ten silver coins who would search her house diligently to find one if it was lost. Then Jesus closes with the story of the prodigal son. He tells of a young man who demanded his inheritance from his father, ran away with it and squandered it and then had to return to his father’s home in shame. The story ends with the father watching for his son, seeing him while he is still far off and joyously running out to meet him. The father has been waiting, aware of the path his son has traveled and longing for the young man’s return. As I think of that story and the father running out to meet his son, I can almost hear the father saying, “I see him! I see him!” As this thought crosses my mind I smile. I am grateful that God loves us so much that He seeks after us, longing to embrace us, to forgive us and receive us no matter what path we have traveled. And I am grateful that the Lord reminded me in such a lovely way.