Jill Jarrell Newsome
I Have Found My Lost Sheep
At Winter Park Elementary in first and second grade we had to watch a movie about not getting in the cars with strangers. I can still remember the man wearing a suit and hat pulling up to the children's school. He told them something came up and their dad cannot pick them up from school so he will take them home. The children got in the car and the man took off. I can see it vividly! I am sure it did good for a lot of kids but it haunted me for years. I had nightmares about being kidnapped while riding my bike to piano or playing in the yard. When I was older I had nightmares that my younger brother and cousins were being kidnapped. The nightmares finally stopped as an adult but I was very protective about where my girls were in public. They knew if they could not see me, I could not see them. If I ever looked and could not see them my heart dropped and I started to panic. I remember seeing other mom's panic when their kids had gotten in the middle of a clothes rounder in a store. It was an immediate heart pull! When you finally see that child you are so happy you almost fall apart!
Matthew 18: 12-14, “What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off? And if he finds it, truly I tell you, he is happier about that one sheep than about the ninety-nine that did not wander off. In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should perish.” When we are lost I am sure that is a glimpse of how Jesus feels. He is worried about our safety.
I am sure Jesus used "sheep" for His parable because while sheep may be cute they are not smart and they are defenseless. Sheep are not swift and they are wayward. They do not know how to get back to the sheep fold unless the shepherd goes and brings him back. They are not like a dog who may find his way home. A wolf, lion or bear could attack it in an instant. Jesus knows there are "lions" waiting to spring upon His sheep and that the sheep cannot help themselves. If it were not for the Good Shepherd, the devil would have us cornered. John 10: 10, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy..." If a sheep is lost, it is in great danger of a cruel death because it has left its defender. Deuteronomy 32: 4, "The Lord is your mighty defender, perfect and just in all his ways..."
Jesus has his own sheep and some are lost. All were lost at one time. Some have gone astray doing things their own way. They are Jesus' sheep because He chose them before they were born. We are part of Jesus' flock. He purchased us at a high price! He said in John 10: 11, "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.
Jesus has his own sheep, and some of them are lost; yea, they were all once in the same condition; for 'all we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way.'"
He bought us with His own life so we are His. Even if we are not thinking about the shepherd He is thinking of us. He will search for us until he finds us.
When Jesus finds His sheep He is joyful! Luke 5: 5-6, “And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, 'Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’” When He finds that lost sheep that He has been looking for and calling out to constantly, He JOYFULLY puts it on His shoulders. He raises it up! He raises up the fallen one. He takes the sheep just as it is, without a word of rebuke, without delay and lifts it to His shoulders - a place of safety!
Is the Shepherd calling you?