Wednesday, May 12, 2010


You know that passage in the Bible where Jesus is giving a few parables to talk about the lost ones of the kingdom of God.  In one example, he equates the situation to a woman who has lost a coin and searches her whole house in order to find it.  Once she finds the coin, she runs through the city streets rejoicing and asking others to rejoice with her.

I must confess to you all - I never much understood why this woman would go rejoicing through the streets over a coin.  Yes, yes, the coin was worth a ton of money in our day.  I get that.  This is a HUGE deal in her finding the coin.  Her entire livelihood was at stake.  I understand the cultural significance.  What I never really connected with though was the running through the streets.  Maybe that is because deep down, I am really a shy, very personal person.  Now, I am sure that some of you will be laughing at that statement, because you know me and have seen me act like a fool on several occasions.  But, deep down, I promise you, there is a quiet, reserved woman that breaks through at times.  She is peaceful, shy and actually very, very private.

For the past two days I was at a council/conference of sorts and had the great pleasure of hearing many sermons preached (something that I quite enjoy - Nerd Alert, I know).  On Monday afternoon, I was sitting at the table with my Bible open, and on Tuesday morning I was sitting in my car frantically searching my bag for my Bible.  I took everything out of my bag... no Bible.  I went rushing into the conference area that was set up with about 40 dining tables the previous day to find the room completely changed into aisled seats.  My heart started to beat fast, very fast.  I was expecting to walk into the room, see my table from the previous day and pick up my brown leather ESV right from the table.  But no, the room was completely changed and my Bible was NO WHERE to be found.

I rushed to the back of the room, and tried to speak very calmly to a very nice, sweet lady about the whereabouts of my Bible.  She asked if it was a reddish-brown Bible that was thin and I almost screamed out, "YES!" but managed to smile and calmly say, "Yes, have you seen it?" instead.  She had seen it.  In fact, she had placed it on the back table.  But as we walked over to the back table, it was no where to be found.  The service was beginning to start, so I sauntered over to my seat, my heart beginning to feel lost.  Something was missing in my life.  My Bible, MY Bible, was gone.  My heart started to long to read it, all I wanted to do was READ it.  I began praying to God, feeling a bit like David at the time and wondering how far God was from me.  I was in serious longing for His Word, and I couldn't find it.  I was beginning to feel depressed, deeply depressed.  At a couple points in time, I think I even had to wipe away a couple of tears.

I began to think about how I could go online and simply order a new thin, brown leather ESV Bible and I would have it again in a matter of days.  But, I knew that it wasn't going to be the same.  This was the Bible that I had with me when I heard J.I. Packer preach on Psalm 67.  This was the Bible that I had taken with me to Dr. Peterman's class on Romans.  My entire book of Romans was filled with notes of "ethnic inclusions," "threads of pain," and "subjective and objective genitives" written in the margins.    Even more recently, I had begun work on a sermon in Exodus, so the majority of the book of Exodus was covered with notes for this upcoming sermon.

I was in pain.  This Bible, my Bible, was lost.  It wasn't in my hands as the preacher began his message.  I wasn't able to quickly look up the passage and begin to write things down in the margins.  No, I had to use my phone to look up the passage and then sit there and sulk that I couldn't underline a key passage.  I was depressed.

The service ended, and I walked by the back table just to see if someone had brought back my Bible and placed it on the table.  As I passed the sound/media area, I noticed a brown-red leather Bible sitting there that looked awfully familiar to me.  I snatched it up, opened the front cover and read my name that was printed on the first page.  I hugged the Bible to my chest and felt completely elated!  My Bible was back!  It was in my hands, I could open it and read it at any point in time, because it was in my hands, no longer missing, no longer lost, and I was completely full of joy!

I didn't run around like the woman who had lost her coin.  Like I said, I am not that type.  However, I could not stop grinning.  I let a friend know that I had found it, and then the idea for this blog came to my mind.

Even though my Bible was the piece that was lost in this story, when it was gone, I was the one that felt lost.  The second I knew that it was gone, I longed for nothing else in my life than to have my Bible back.  All I wanted to do was to sit down and read it, soak in His presence with it and pray through it.  I was not myself.  I was depressed, I was sad, I was angry, I was completely and utterly lost.  But once my Bible was found, I was found.  Part of me was missing and when I had it back, I was whole again.

So, the woman and her coin became more identifiable to me yesterday.  While I might not have run through the streets throwing a party for having found my once-lost Bible, I am blogging to the world that I have found my Bible!  And you better believe that I am rejoicing!