“What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?” (Luke 15:4)
I sat on the floor of the playroom, surrounded by toys still needing to be packed, when suddenly they just weren’t toys anymore … but rather entrenched memories. The block that all three of my kids learned to stand with, the horse that would randomly turn on in the middle of the night scaring me half to death and waking up my kids, the bathtub toys, the character toys that had been filled to the brim with imaginative stories while daddy and my oldest son played on the floor, dinky cars that have zoomed over every couch, counter and wall. How was I supposed to choose?
How would I select the toys that mattered most or conversely, what would not be as noticeably missed? I wasn’t able to take them all because logically it was not feasible. After all, we were moving across the country.
So I sat and stared. It was one of those moments where the emotions built up inside me and I couldn’t find my way out. Friends and family had given us these toys. I had walked aisles searching for them. My kid’s eyes had lit up with each new toy being brought into the house. This was not just an action figure anymore. It was suddenly a part of my child’s life and me as mom had to choose.
I was running out of time too. I had to leave toys behind. Loved or not, we couldn’t bring them all. I explained to the kids over and over as someone came to pick up the toys we were giving away, that another child will love their toy and we will have toys when we move. There was a few tears but they chose the toys most precious and let go of the ones that did not hold their hearts. I kept a few that held my heart even though my kid’s don’t use them anymore.
Isn’t it amazing though that Jesus chooses all of us? He will leave the 99 that are safe and then diligently go after the one that is lost. There is no person on this earth that He chooses as more precious than another. I was reminded of this promise as I carefully packed up the toys. That is, He loves each and everyone of us the same. He died for each one of us and likewise, He has a purpose for each of us.
Every single toy had a moment to shine. Every single car and action figure played a role in my toddler’s development in the last four years. Each one had served its purpose but unlike those toys, we have not. No matter what stage of life you are at, whether it is young or old, you still have a purpose. He still wants to use you and if you stop for just a moment to look around and listen, He will help guide you to that destined purpose.
Indeed, you are so valuable to Jesus and unlike these toys, you are worth the price He paid when He shed His precious blood on the cross.