Six years ago on my 35th birthday, my husband gave me a beautiful bracelet. I love jewelry and this bracelet was made even more special to me by the giver (my husband) and the occasion (my birthday). So imagine how I felt 3 years later when I lost it! I was devastated.
It was insured, so we filed a claim and later I purchased a replacement bracelet. I got over the loss and life went on. Until my daughter pulled all the sofa cushions off of the sofa to build a tower with them and exclaimed "Look mom, I found your bracelet!"
Now some might think I was thrilled by this news, but actually my first thought was "quick, stuff it back into the sofa!" We'd already filed the claim, gotten the money and spent it on another bracelet. Not very graceful, huh? Of course I had to let the insurance company know, and we had to repay the money. So my first thought was not to be thrilled. (I am happy now to have it back. And having 2 bracelets isn't so bad when you realize you have 2 precious daughters whom you can pass them on to).
We are blessed to have a God who is more committed to us and finds us more precious, than I did that bracelet. If we become lost, he doesn't just replace us with a new believer. He continues to try and bring us back to him, regardless of the cost.
What once was lost, now is found. That is God's grace to us. Isn't it amazing?
Matthew 18:12-14 -- If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off? And if he finds it, I tell you the truth, he is happier about that one sheep than about the ninety-nine that did not wander off. In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should be lost.
Luke 15:3-7 -- Then Jesus told them this parable: "Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Does he not leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, 'Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.' I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.