In Pursuit of You
“If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them wanders away, what will he do? Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others on the hills and go out to search for the one that is lost? And if he finds it, I tell you the truth, he will rejoice over it more than over the ninety-nine that didn’t wander away! In the same way, it is not my heavenly Father’s will that even one of these little ones should perish.” -- Matthew 18:12-14
When I began my collegiate coaching career, I went to a friend of mine with experience and asked him what the one big thing was that I needed to know. His response, “You can be a great coach, but if you can’t recruit, you can’t win.” Amazing advice, and absolutely a fact that holds true season after season. As a result, every summer and practically every break between games and practices, college coaches hit the recruiting trail. We go to showcases, games and tournaments while spending countless hours watching film all in an effort to identify those players that we want to be a part of our program. Then we send emails, text messages and make phone calls as we pursue those student-athletes we want to sign to our teams.
In Matthew 18:12-14, we see a picture of our Heavenly Father as One who is in pursuit of those that are lost. The imagery here is that of a shepherd who has lost just one of his sheep, one of his hundreds to be specific and finds that loss of even one to be unacceptable. We have a Heavenly Father who desires a relationship with each of us, and like the shepherd, He goes out in pursuit of those who are lost.
Think of that word “pursuit” for a moment. This is not simply God hoping we will find our way back to Him and is sitting lazily on His throne; rather, we see a loving God who is actively searching for us, actively seeking us, because for Him it is unacceptable that even one person should be lost.
Like the coach that is recruiting and pursuing a player, our Heavenly Father wants us to be on His team. He wants to find us so that we may join with Him in what He is doing, first as we accept His free gift of salvation, and second, as we join together with Him seeking to lead the lost to a saving knowledge of Him. We are meant to serve the lost so that they may see the Father’s love through us.
- How does it feel to know that it is unacceptable to our Heavenly Father that even one person should perish without knowing Him? How does that make you feel towards those around you?
- Knowing that the God of Creation finds you worthy of His active pursuit, how does it encourage you to live differently today?
“Heavenly Father, thank You for pursuing me when I was lost. Thank You for finding me and bringing me back to a place of safety with You. Help me to live in such a way that leads the lost back to You. Amen.”