Sometimes You Have to Leave the Sheep to Find a Sheep

‘Tell me. Suppose a man has a hundred sheep and one of them strays; will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hillside and go in search of the stray?  In truth I tell you, if he finds it, it gives him more joy than do the ninety-nine that did not stray at all.  Similarly, it is never the will of your Father in heaven that one of these little ones should be lost.’ (Matt. 18:12-14).

So Jesus, to his disciples when he was asked who the greatest in the kingdom was.  His answer is really quite stunning for he doesn’t give any sort of answer that our world and its ideology would give.  He doesn’t say ‘it’s the wealthy guy’ or ‘it’s the popular girl’ or ‘it’s the best looking super model.’  On the contrary, his answer maintains that the greatest in the kingdom is the lowliest of servants and the smallest and the weakest and the humblest.  Which is exactly why Jesus concludes his answer with a suggestion to the disciples that it is sometimes best to leave the flock to pursue the little lamb gone astray.

Sometimes Christian’s think that all the efforts of the Kingdom of God should be utilized for their benefit and for their welfare.  They believe, for whatever reason, that God exists to serve them and the Church exists to meet their needs alone.  But Jesus sees things differently.  The aim of the Church is to reach the wandering.  Or, to put it quite plainly- the Church doesn’t exist to meet your needs- you exist as a member of the Church to meet the needs of others but most especially the need for salvation and rescue and reclamation of those who are lost.

The Father’s primary aim and goal isn’t your comfort, it is your salvation.  And the salvation of the little ones that far too many overlook because they are small, and quiet, and powerless.