Lost in the Woods
May 7, 2009 • By Ed Wrather
Then all the tax collectors and the sinners drew near to Him to hear Him. And the Pharisees and scribes complained, saying, “This Man receives sinners and eats with them.” So He spoke this parable to them, saying: “What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’ I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance.”
“Or what woman, having ten silver coins, if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp, sweep the house, and search carefully until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls her friends and neighbors together, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the piece which I lost!’ Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” - Luke 15: 1-10 NKJV.
(Read also the Parable of the Lost Son - Luke 15:11-31)
Joshua Childers has been found! Joshua had been lost in the woods of Missouri’s Mark Twain National Forest for 50 hours (In 2009). He slipped out of his family’s mobile home late Monday morning and wandered away. He was found about three miles from home wearing only a shirt, one shoe, and he was all wet. He had survived over two days of exposure in the cold and wet woods. Joshua is only three years old! The man, who found the boy, Donnie Halpin, said that the family was, “…just happy, so happy to have their little boy back.” Madison County Sheriff David Lewis knew that time was running out and thought that three days would be the most that a little boy could survive on his own in the woods with no food, and hardly any clothing. Sheriff Lewis said after the boy was found, “It's a miracle, I'm so happy you can't believe it!”
You may have never been lost in the woods wandering around trying to survive but there are a lot of people who are lost in a spiritual sense in this world. They are just as lost as that little boy was, they do not know which way to turn, and when they do make a decision, it often makes their situation even worse.
Many of the lost have given up on trying to make sense of the world; they are just trying to make it through another day. Often the lost may feel as though no one cares for them or knows what they are going through. However, they are wrong about that, because God makes it clear that He is searching for them, and that He cares for them. In fact, not only is the Holy Spirit there trying to get their attention, there is an army of believers who are out looking for them and trying to find them.
Thirty-nine years ago (2016 Update: 46 years ago now in 1970) my wife shared with me her testimony of when she had prayed to receive Jesus as her Savior when she was a little girl. The next day I made an appointment to see the pastor of a church that was a few blocks away from us. As the pastor, Finley Tinnin, led me to the Lord, he shared with me Revelation 3:20 where Jesus says, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.” Dr. Tinnin then asked me if I wanted to pray and ask Jesus to come into my heart. I prayed silently asking Jesus to come into my life. I’m not really sure that I prayed in words, I just wanted Jesus. Jesus walked through the door and into my life.
If you have been lost in the woods of life, Jesus is knocking at the door of your life, and He wants to come in - now, would be a good time to let Him in. Why not open the door, and ask Him to forgive you of your sins (Romans 3:23; Romans 10:13), and come into your heart and life, right now?