Where Are You?

Thursday, May 19, 2022
Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Softly And Tenderly Jesus Is Calling"1 (Lyrics)

Luke 19:10 – For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost. (NKJV)

It seems to me that a lot of time and effort goes into entertaining our children. During school breaks and vacations, we see reports on television about what to do and where to go: theme parks, craft fairs, hikes, and activities at nature conservancies, to name a few. Then there are the many video games and television shows to entertain children.

When I was a little boy, there was none of that. When the weather was bad, I would spend hours by myself in front of the living room window, drawing and painting pictures. I still have some of them. When it was nice outside, Mother would say, "Go out and play and don't come home till it's time to eat."

We lived in a semi-rural area, where there were a lot of children, and we mostly entertained ourselves. One of the games that we played on occasion was hide and seek. It was, and perhaps still is, a popular game where a number of players would hide, to be found by one or two players. There were a lot of places to hide at the various properties where we were allowed to play. The seekers would look for likely places where a child was hiding. They would try to hear movement and thus find them. When they were unable to find someone, they would call, "Where are you?"

Jesus tells a parable of a man who had lost a sheep:

Matthew 18:12-13 – What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them goes astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine and go to the mountains to seek the one that is straying? And if he should find it, assuredly, I say to you, he rejoices more over that sheep than over the ninety-nine that did not go astray. (NKJV)

In my mind, I can see the man going back to the hilly area with rocks and deep gullies where he had let his sheep graze. The shepherd carefully looks everywhere, listening if he could hear it, and calling out, "Where are you?" He knows that his sheep would know his voice and answer him.

There are so many people these days who have strayed from the flock, people who have chosen a different way of life. There are others who have never heard the call of the Shepherd, who are lost in the wilderness of our secular world. But wherever we are or whatever we are doing:

    Softly and tenderly Jesus is calling.
    Calling for you and for me;
    See, on the portals He's waiting and watching,
    Watching for you and for me
           Will L. Thompson (1847-1909)

If you are one who has not yet heard the voice of the great Shepherd, or if you have recently strayed from the flock, listen closely for His voice calling you home.

Prayer: Our Father in heaven, it is such a comfort to us to know that You are always calling us, and we earnestly pray that more people would hear Your voice and be part of the community of believers. We ask it in Jesus' name. Amen.

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About the author:

Joel Jongkind <austria67@bmts.com>
Meaford, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Amen, Joel.


    Thank you, Joel, for a calming devotion. Blessings.


    Thank you, Joel, for a very interesting devotional and a very good challenge.


    Nice to hear from you hope you are feeling well.
    Wishing you God’s blessings.


    Thank you for the timely post, Joel! This is a topic I am doing soon with my Sunday School students. God bless!


    Amen and amen! May we unstop our ears! Thank you for sharing this encouraging message with us. Blessings.


    Thank you, Joel.
    Blessings to you,
    (ON)


    Well done, Joel. And indeed may many hear his voice and respond by coming home.
    Blessings.


    You message was so heart felt. It keeps reminding me that God is only a prayer away from being lost. Pray that more and more will call on His name and be saved. God Bless you.


    Hello Joel,
    Your words today also made me remember God’s calling out to Adam in the garden, “Where are you?”. God is a seeking God, as He desires to have us know Him. What a Saviour we have!


    Hi Joel,
    It was good to read your devotion this morning.
    I hope you have completely recovered, and you and your wife are well.
    Blessings.


    Joel,
    Your devotional took me back to the times it was safe to go play all day long, and even our children had that privilege. Our God is so good to us that we don’t need to ever hide from him. What a joy to hear him calling us by name. Thank you for this writing.


    Thanks, Joel, for another of your very mindful and encouraging devotionals. I loved reading about your early playing days as it was like my early days. Now I get to play hide and seek with great-grandchildren, so it is still a fun time! However what is important too, is to encourage these young ones to seek our loving Jesus and be members of His fold and not stray away. Blessings for these very special writings you always contribute.


    Good Morning, Joel!
    Thank you for today’s devotion! Not only because it serves as a reminder that we have a Saviour who is easy to ‘find’ wherever we are, but also the devotion brought forth many memories of playing ‘Hide and Seek’ as a kid growing up on a farm in Ontario. To include one of the good, old hymns in your devotion was like whipped cream on the strawberry shortcake…. coming soon.
    May you continue to teach us, in good health.
    Blessings!
    (ON)


    Joel,
    Thank you for today’s devotional. What a beautiful reminder of the Saviour’s love for the lost.
    I remember as a young child in church that the song ‘Softly and Tenderly’ was often used as an invitation for seekers to give their heart to the Lord. It has always been my favourite song of invitation.
    Your thoughts in this devotion warmed my heart and I thank you for sharing them.
    Abundant Blessings,
    (ON)


    Good morning, Joel,
    I also remember those times of the freedom to decide what I wanted to do and play with my brothers or my girlfriend who lived across the road. They are good memories. My children also grew up with the same freedom because I was able to be home with them for many years and there were still some other mothers like me in the neighbourhood that had children they could play with. By the time my granddaughter came, the world was a different place and became a world of restrictions to keep them safe and of daycare to mind them. Change happens but Jesus is the same. He is there for us comforting us, reaching out for us if we have strayed and just loving us.
    Thank you for reminding us to pray that more people hear His voice and become believers. May you continue to share your thoughts and I hope that your health and your wife’s health is improving each and every day. Blessings.


    Hi Joel,
    Our children seem to think that their 85-year-old mother needs to have help cleaning the house; so, they have found two ladies to come “help.” One of them is the mother two school aged children and is pregnant with her third. When I asked her the other day what plans she had for her children for the summer (my thoughts being…she is working and then what plans does she have). She replied, “We don’t have a television or internet. They go outside and play.”
    When our grandchildren were younger, they would come to stay with my husband and me at our ranch for a week. We were exhausted when they left, but we didn’t “do” television, etc. They still love to come to the ranch even though all but two are adults now, and they get great joy from coming here and being together.
    Times have changed since we were growing up in so many ways. Our Presbyterian Reformed tradition of worship does not seem to appeal to young people now…even those who have grown up in the Reformed tradition. AND. we pray, don’t we?
    Thanks for your devotional, Joel, which obviously struck a chord with me.

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