by Dr. Charles Stanley
Saturday July 17, 2004
InTouch Early Light Devotional
Loved But Lost
1 John 4:9-10
One of the wonderful things about our heavenly Father is that through Scripture, He reveals what matters to Him. In the parables of the lost coin, the lost sheep, and the "lost" prodigal son, Jesus discloses the heart of God. Those who have missed the saving truth of God, as well as believers who have wandered away from His ways, learn that they matter greatly to Him.
Just as the widow scoured the room to find the coin, God pursues us so that we might accept His gift of faith. Like the shepherd who left those ninety-nine sheep in safety to find the one who had wandered away, our Shepherd has the priority of bringing us into relationship with Himself. And His concern is the same whether we are roaming for the first or hundredth time.
Just as the prodigal's father welcomed his son back and forgave him, our heavenly Father promises the same to us. Because of the saving work of Jesus Christ, God's love "keeps no record of wrongs." (1 Corinthians 13:5) The prodigal's father threw a celebratory party, and Scripture tells us that heaven rejoices when one who was lost has been found. (Luke 15:6, 9-10, 24)
Our loving heavenly Father desires that each person in His creation be "found." Knowing that all people start life in a "lost" spiritual condition, (Romans 3:10-11) God offers each one a place in His family through Jesus' redemptive work, and He has entrusted believers with spreading the message of hope. Does your heart beat as God's does for the lost? If not, pray for a heart change.
Are you looking for an outreach that will inspire your children to grow in their faith? Visit Teen Connection (www.teen-connection.info), the official teen outreach of In Touch Ministries. Be sure to check out the latest interviews with Atlanta Braves' pitcher Russ Ortiz and Dove award-winning band, downhere.
For free one-on-one mentoring online from Dr. Charles Stanley, visit