It was a moment of sheer terror. One minute he was there, the next he was gone. The fear inside of me grew with each passing second. How could I have lost my two-year-old? I was distracted, talking to a neighbor for just a few short moments, and in that time, he walked behind the giant pines that towered above our backyard.
I have lived in the country my entire life, and we had moved to town the previous fall, so were only now enjoying city life. And by city, I mean Cold Spring… nothing too wild. I was used to the dangers that the countryside provided to a wandering babe; cornfields, manure pits, cattle yards, etc. But none of that scared me like losing a child in the city!! My mind immediately raced to the worst-case scenario. What if he got kid-napped? What if he ran onto the road? What if he fell into the sewage drain? The 5 minutes of agony that I experienced before I found him took AT LEAST 5 years off of my life. Needless to say, we fenced in our entire backyard shortly after.
We ended up finding him up on the neighbor's deck looking into their house… awkward!!! We didn’t even know that neighbor yet, so thankfully he wasn’t home to realize he had a peeping Tom named Peter…
Anyone who has ever lost a child can relate to the emotional whip-lash that occurs. You go from fear and sorrow to joy and relief in seconds’ flat. Think of a time that you lost something that meant a great deal to you- your keys, your passport, your wallet, a child, a wedding ring, etc. Think about the emotional rollercoaster you rode. Now view this parable in light of those emotions.
“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 15:8-10
At first I want to say, “Lady, you have 9 others. Chill. I know it’s a lot of money, but you have plenty besides that one.” But this story isn’t about money at all. It’s about me. I’m the coin. Thank God, God doesn’t say, “Eh. I have enough people that love me and keep my commands. So what if that one is missing. I have plenty others.”
As a mom to 7- no. Just no. I didn’t have 7 kids when I lost little Peter, but if I were to lose someone today, I sure as heck wouldn’t use that argument!! Just think, “Actually I have plenty of other kids. Just forget about that one.” That is insane. I would have the exact same level of freak out because I love each and every one of my kids unconditionally, even if I have a bunch of them! Love makes no mathematical sense.
I love that the woman in the parable has a huge party when she finds her lost coin. It is a big deal! And I love that this passionate lady represents God Himself! It amazes me that He would care that much about one individual person that not only would He do everything in His power to seek me out, He will celebrate every time I respond. This line really speaks to my heart. “Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
I know I’m a baptized believer who tries to live a sacramental life, but up until the day I die I will continue to “lose” myself. But thanks to His endless mercy, every time I repent, He rejoices that He was able to “find” me once again.
If you remember nothing else from this story, I hope you can understand the greatness of Our Lord’s sorrow in losing us to sin. This sorrow should be the driving force in keeping us from sin. Why would we ever willingly cause someone that we love so much to experience the pain of loss? Jesus loves us more than we can ever imagine. Stay found.
Until next time my dear friends- your sister in Christ,