“Rejoice with me for I have found my lost sheep.” (Luke 15: 6) Each of us may be that “lost sheep.” Each of us is in need of God’s forgiveness and the saving grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.

All of the readings for this 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time deal with lost souls, lost people. The first reading from Exodus is the story of how the Israelites became spiritually lost by worshiping the Golden Calf while Moses was on the mountain top. In his first letter to Timothy, Paul outlines how he was lost until the Lord reached out to him. The Gospel includes three parables from Jesus, all of which talk about being lost — the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the lost son.

In every case, however, it is a merciful and loving God who forgives and reaches out to whoever is lost. Stewardship teaches us to trust in God. It reminds us on a daily basis to give thanks to God for the love and blessings we receive. Yes, in a sense we are all lost, but no matter what, God loves us, God seeks us, and God welcomes us warmly when we repent and return. To paraphrase the Parable of the Prodigal Son, “We are lost, but through stewardship we can be found.”

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