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Summary: We are of such great worth to God that He will never give up on us or write us off.

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I HAVE A FAVORITE PICTURE FRAME IN MY OFFICE THAT DISPLAYS THE FOLLOWING STATEMENT: “JUST THINK, YOU’RE NOT HERE BY CHANCE, BUT BY GOD’S CHOOSING. HIS HAND FORMED YOU AND MADE YOU THE PERSON YOU ARE. HE COMPARES YOU TO NO ONE ELSE, YOU ARE ONE OF A KIND. YOU LACK NOTHING THAT HIS GRACE CAN’T GIVE YOU. HE HAS ALLOWED YOU TO BE HERE AT THIS TIME IN HISTORY TO FULFILL HIS SPECIAL PURPOSE FOR THIS GENERATION.”

THE TRUTH CANNOT BE OVER-STATED OR EMPHASIZED ENOUGH: GOD CREATED YOU! GOD HAS PLACED EXTREME VALUE TO YOUR LIFE! YOU ARE OF GREAT CONCERN TO HIM AND YOUR ETERNAL DESTINY IS AN IMMEASURABLE PRIORITY FOR HIM.

WE MUST DISPEL ALL LIES THAT ATTEMPT TO MAKE US BELIEVE OTHERWISE. NOTHING IN ALL OF CREATION CAN DIMINISH YOUR VALUE OR STANDING IN THE SIGHT OF OUR LOVING FATHER.

ROMANS 8:38-39, CLEARLY STATES, “I AM CONVINCED THAT NOTHING CAN EVER SEPARATE US FROM GOD’S LOVE. NEITHER DEATH NOR LIFE, NEITHER ANGELS NOR DEMONS, NEITHER OUR FEARS FOR TODAY NOR OUR WORRIES ABOUT TOMORROW—NOT EVEN THE POWERS OF HELL CAN SEPARATE US FROM GOD’S LOVE. NO POWER IN THE SKY ABOVE OR IN THE EARTH BELOW—INDEED, NOTHING IN ALL CREATION WILL EVER BE ABLE TO SEPARATE US FROM THE LOVE OF GOD THAT IS REVEALED IN CHRIST JESUS OUR LORD.

WE NEED TO HEAR SUCH A MESSAGE THAT GOD SEEKS AFTER US TO RESTORE OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH HIM THAT IS BROKEN AND SEPARATED BY OUR SINS. FROM THE MOMENT SIN ENTERED INTO THIS WORLD, GOD IMMEDIATELY COMES FORTH TO BEGIN THE PROCESS OF HEALING, FORGIVING, AND RESTORING. THE MOST BLESSED WORDS OF GENESIS 3:8-9, “THEN THE MAN AND HIS WIFE HEARD THE SOUND OF THE LORD GOD AS HE WAS WALKING IN THE GARDEN …AND THEY HID FROM THE LORD GOD AMONG THE TREES OF THE GARDEN. BUT THE LORD GOD CALLED TO THE MAN, "WHERE ARE YOU?"

ANYONE WHO IS LOST AND TO ANYONE WHO STRAYS AND FALLS AWAY, GOD IS PATIENT AND ACTIVELY WORKING IN PURSUIT OF SEEKING, FINDING, AND RESTORING. 2 PETER 3:9, “THE LORD IS NOT SLOW IN KEEPING HIS PROMISE, AS SOME UNDERSTAND SLOWNESS. HE IS PATIENT WITH YOU, NOT WANTING ANYONE TO PERISH, BUT EVERYONE TO COME TO REPENTANCE.”

GOD PURSUES EVEN IF WE FLEE. GOD IS STEADFAST EVEN WHEN WE WAIVER. GOD OFFERS PARDON WHEN WE FEEL WE’VE RUN OUT OF CHANCES. WHEN OTHERS HAVE WRITTEN US OFF, GOD REFUSES TO GIVE UP ON US.

THE TWO PARABLES IN OUR SCRIPTURE TODAY PAINTS A VIVID PICTURE OF GOD WHO COMPASSIONATELY SEARCHES FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE LOST, DISCONNECTED, AND SINFUL. GOD DOES NOT GIVE UP, LET UP OR STOP THIS PROCESS. WE ARE JUST TOO VALUABLE.

IN THE FIRST PARABLE OF THE LOST SHEEP, JESUS CONDEMNS THE PHARISEE’ CRITICAL DISGUST TOWARDS THOSE WHO THEY REFER TO AS “PUBLICANS AND SINNERS” FOR THEY WOULD NOT ASSOCIATE THEMSELVES WITH THEM. THEY KEPT THEIR DISTANCE.

THE MESSAGE IS PLAIN AND SIMPLE: GOD, AS A LOVING SHEPHERD, WILL SEARCH UNTIL HE FINDS AND ONCE HE FINDS, WILL PERSONALLY PICK UP AND CARRY THE LOST SHEEP BACK HOME AND GATHERS OTHERS TO REJOICE.

THE FACT THAT THE SHEPHERD WOULD SINGLE OUT ONE LONE SHEEP IN ORDER TO FIND IT IS THE IMAGRY OF GOD THAT WE NEED AS PROOF THAT EVERY SINGLE ONE OF US IS DEAR TO HIM. THE WHOLE POINT OF JESUS SEEKING OUT AND RECEIVING THE LOST AND SINFUL IS TO SHOW HOW PLEASING IT IS TO GOD TO RECEIVE SUCH SINNERS BACK INTO FELLOWSHIP WITH HIM.

THERE CAN NEVER BE ANYTHING TOO REPULSIVE, IMMORAL, UNETHICAL, DOGMATIC OR SACRELIGIOUS, THAT WOULD MAKE GOD GIVE UP ALL HOPE OF FORGIVING, RESTORING, AND REDEEMING YOU! SIMPLY PUT: YOU CAN NEVER BE BAD ENOUGH FOR THE ONE WHO IS GOOD ENOUGH TO MAKE ALL BAD THINGS GOOD AGAIN!

PLEASE NOTE THE IMAGRY OF HOW THE SHEPHERD BRINGS THE LOST SHEEP BACK HOME! THE SHEPHERD CARRIES THE SHEEP GENTLY ACROSS HIS SHOULDERS TO INDICATE WHAT A JOY IT IS FOR GOD TO FORGIVE US. IT GIVES HIM PLEASURE TO WIN US BACK!

THIS DISPLAY OF EXTRAORDINARY LOVE FROM GOD IS TO SHOW US THE LEVEL OF PASSIONATE CARE HE HAS TO ENSURE US THAT OUR RETURN WILL BE GENTLE, MERCIFUL AND GRACIOUS.

JESUS THEN CONTINUES WITH A SIMILAR PARABLE OF THE LOST COIN. IT WAS CUSTOMARY IN THOSE DAYS THAT PALESTINIAN WOMEN WOULD RECEIVE TEN SILVER COINS AS A WEDDING GIFT.

EACH COIN, WORTH ABOUT ONE DAYS WAGES, WERE HELD IN SENTIMENTAL VALUE AS A WEDDING RING WOULD BE TODAY. SO, TO LOSE A COIN, OR TO LOSE YOUR WEDDING RING, COULD CAUSE GREAT DISTRESS AND WOULD BE EXTREMELY UPSETTING. THE WOMAN BASICALLY LOST ONE-TENTH OF HER LIFE SAVINGS NO WONDER SHE SEARCHED SO DILIGENTLY TO FIND IT!

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