Preach the message, be ready whether it is convenient or not, reprove, rebuke, exhort with complete patience and instruction. 2 Tim 4:2 (NET)
There is a lady, Erica Schmidt, who has been missing from our neighborhood for over a month. Her daughter was one of my teen’s teachers in elementary school so this touches our lives and hearts as well. It’s an urgent need for this family to locate their matriarch; posters, news bulletins and social media are all engaged in the search. My heart aches and I am reminded to pray and keep my eyes alert whenever I come across the written pleas. That’s what these posters and social media posts do – they stir us up and keep us vigilant.
I thought about how when a child or loved one goes astray or is missing, we lose all awareness of what is socially ‘acceptable’ but instead, we cry out in malls or street corners, ‘Help! I’ve lost my child!’ and go on to describe them in detail. Suddenly strangers become trusted team members as we rally together and search.
But here’s the thing. As we walk through life, we come into contact with so many who are lost and don’t know it. We smile (hopefully) and order coffees, pay for groceries, or pass by some silently throughout our day. Unlike those displayed on flyers, these folks are not marked as missing yet are lost sheep poster children.
I am not suggesting that we all buy soap boxes and stand yelling for all to repent, but I am challenged today to realize what 2 Timothy is saying; to see the need as urgent and live with intention. Spread the Gospel and when necessary, use words. Love on people. I need to work this out as often I am so self-absorbed and running through my tight schedule, I get perturbed when waylaid or inconvenienced. Lord, forgive me.
Please keep an eye open for Erica Schmidt, (click here for the Find Erica Facebook page). Her family has been diligent in their quest to find her . . . we need to step up our search party efforts as well . . . and not just for Erica but for all who are lost.