“Or what woman, having ten silver coins, if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp and sweep the house and seek diligently until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin that I had lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” (Luke 15:8-10)
In Luke 15, Jesus gives three parables of three things which were lost but are then found: a lost sheep, a lost coin, and the prodigal son. This week, I experienced my own lost but found story, which like the woman who lost her coin, I feel in gratitude that I need to share it:
Monday night, I opened my backpack to discover that my Bible was missing! The one pocket which I always kept it in, was empty, with the exception of a couple of mechanical pencils. The Bible given to me by my youth minister when I was in high school. With a fast-beating heart, my racing mind concluded of only three places which it could be–accidentally left in a classroom within the McInteer (the Bible building on campus), or possibly the caf. For I clearly remembered using it during my two o’ clock class, though details of it after that were fuzzy.
As soon as possible, I raced to the McInteer, praying the classrooms were unlocked–turning their knobs to find that they were not. Frustrated, I then activated an alarm on my phone, to wake up and to search the classrooms before they were first used at 8:30 by the early rising classes.
So in a Superman tank top, crocs, and comfy pajama pants, I groggily made my way to the McInteer at 7:30 in the morning. Sadly, to disappointingly find them both void of my Bible. I texted another Bible major friend to keep an eye open for it, and emailed the Bible Office and Public Safety, hoping that someone had found it and turned it in:
Hey Doc Stoc, I was wondering if a lost Bible has been turned into the office? I think I accidently left in a classroom yesterday; however, I got up early this morning and couldn't find it. It's a brown, leather, ESV, with tons of notes written in it, and it does have my name on the front page.
Another dead end.
Panic was swelling, and all hope was almost gone. There was only one last place that I could look.
Miss Norma swiped my student ID so that I could get into the caf, sauntering to the table I had eaten at the night before, with no Bible in sight. Disappointed once again, I ate lunch with a good friend who had come with me. After disposing of my dishes, and as my friend was helping himself to some ice cream, I decided to give it one more shot. I walked over to ask Miss Norma, one of the sweetest ladies you can ever meet, who almost every day greeted you with a smile as she swiped your ID, and answer when you asked her about her day, “I’m blessed and highly favored,” if a Bible had been found that morning.
“Yes, sweety,” she answered.
“What?!” I asked, not expecting her answer.
“Yeah, I found a Bible. Put it on one of the shelves for you,” she said, pointing toward the cubby just outside the caf. I tried looking to see if I could spots it. “It’s yours, dear,” she assured me.
In shock and thankfulness, I stammered a, “Thank you,” before almost leaping out the door, seeing my Bible sitting there, waiting for me. My heart was bouncing with joy as I grasped it within my fingers. “Thank you!” I repeated aloud again and again to Him. Grateful, that something I was beginning to believe had been lost forever, had been found!