Daily Devotional

Luke 19:10

For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.

“Man overboard! Man overboard! This is not a drill.” I was around twenty years old when I first heard these words, while serving on an attack aircraft carrier during the Vietnam War. Apparently, our shipmate was blown off the flight deck during flight operations. We searched for days and he was never found.

That was fifty years ago but I will never forget the helpless feelings as the hours and days passed in our sweeping searches. I remember the ache when the rescue and recovery operation was called off and we moved on.

I have often wondered what might have been if we had searched just one more day, in one more effort to find him. It still brings sadness to my heart, especially as I try to imagine what his family feels when they see his name etched on a memorial wall in Washington, DC. “Why didn’t they keep searching? Why they did leave him for lost?”

My mind reflects often on the many passages of Scripture about God’s “search and rescue” operations to deliver us spiritually drowning people. My heart rejoices in His amazing grace that causes me to sing, “I once was lost, but now I’m found....” My spirit is also challenged to never give up praying for and participating in God’s Search and Rescue Team to the “dying shipmates” in my family, neighborhood, country and world.

May the Lord always keep us on the lookout for the lost He came to save (Luke 19:10). May our hearts break over the things that break His heart. May we make the most of every opportunity God gives us to rescue souls (cf. Colossian 4:5). One more day! One more effort! One more life saved!
New American Standard Bible (NASB)
Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation
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