"Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost."
I must have been around the age of three when I wandered into the corn field. At the time we lived in Minnesota on a farm. It was a small farm but the corn fields were massive. Of course, I don't remember this at all but have heard the story from my mom. One can only imagine the panic in her heart at the realization of where her baby girl had gone. But if you know my mom, you also know that she was a woman of action. She quickly gathered forces and they spread out each taking a row until I was found. A good ending to what could have been a tragedy.
It was a happy life for me, living on the farm. Being so young (and the baby of the family) I had no responsibilities and was free to enjoy all that farm life had to offer. I remember playing in the barn with the kitties, running after the dog who was probably chasing the chickens, and the hay bales that my brother would make forts out of. Life was carefree for me. There were no worries about bills being paid, putting food on the table, or even about the creepy neighbor farmer that would come around to bother mom. I was sheltered by forces unseen to me so I didn't realize the danger of the real world.
If I had been older I might have understood the danger of being in the corn field all alone. Each direction looks the same and the only thing to do is walk in one direction. But this could have had dire consequences. It was a very fortunate thing that I was found. I'm pretty sure that my mom was relieved and grateful.
Over the years, since I have become a Christ-follower, I am becoming more and more aware of being found. For much of my young years I had no idea that I was lost, caught up in a world that looked fun and enticing. The truth of the matter was that living for one's self most often was a disappointment and had painful consequences. The soul can be hurting and not even know it. There was no realization for my young heart that there was something better to life. But worse than that, there was no realization that there was a life after death and it was coming hard like a freight train ready to run me over.
Years go by and, in God's kindness, He comes for me. There is no resistance once He calls. Who would want to if it is truly known, not what is taken away, but what is given. The Lord changes the heart and there is no going back. Each moment of days, months and years is a progression of being found, understanding what it is to be rescued. One does not get over it. As time goes by each remembrance of being found is like drinking from a delicious fountain of life giving water.
Being lost in a corn field can be frightening. But being lost in a corn field and not realizing you are lost is sad and tragic. It is tremendous to be found and an incomprehensible joy to realize it.
I bless thee that I know thee,
I once lived in the world, but was ignorant of its Creator,
was partaker of thy providences, but knew not the Provider,
was blind while enjoying the sunlight,
was deaf to all things spiritual,
with voices all around me, understood many things,
but had no knowledge of thy ways,
saw the world, but did not see Jesus only.
O happy day, when in thy love's sovereignty thou didst look on me,
and call me by grace.
Then did the dead heart begin to beat,
the darkened eye glimmer with light,
the dull ear catch thy echo,
and I turned to thee and found thee,
a God ready to hear, willing to save.
Then did I find my heart at enmity to thee, vexing thy Spirit;
Then did I fall at they feet and hear thee thunder, '
The soul that sinneth, it must die',
But when grace made me to know thee,
and admire a God who hated sin,
thy terrible justice held my will submissive.
My thoughts were then as knives cutting my head.
Then didst thou come to me in silken robes of love,
and I saw thy Son dying that I might live,
and in that death I found my all.
My soul doth sing at the remembrance of that peace;
The gospel cornet brought a sound unknown to me
before that reached my heart -- and I lived
-- never to lose my hold on Christ or his hold on me.
Grant that I may always weep to the praise of mercy found,
and tell to others as long as I live,
that thou art a sin-pardoning God,
taking up the blasphemer and the ungodly,
and washing them from their deepest strain.
~ Valley of Vision