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The One Without a Ring

Published on April 13, 2017 | By

The Chicago Cubs continue their celebration tour after winning last year’s World Series. During a pregame ceremony this week, they received their illustrious rings and a championship banner was raised before Monday’s game against the Dodgers. Displaying

Reaping the rewards of winning the World Series is a memorable experience for a team, but the Cubs begin shifting their attention to winning another one this season.  They have kept a majority of their team intact, and 24 of the 25 active players sport a championship ring (three players won with other teams). Pitcher, Brett Anderson, is the only one left out from this exclusive club. Anderson jokingly said, “Maybe the rallying cry for 2017 should be ‘Win one for Brett.' I’m the only one without one.” Every player desires to be a champion and get that ring. The Cubs will set out to win again, and if they do, Brett will be brought into the winning family...no longer feeling like an outsider.

The Cubs situation of having 24 of the 25 active players with a ring, and one still searching, reminds me of Jesus’ parable of the “Lost Sheep.”

Luke 15:1-7 (ESV) gives us this narrative: 

"Now the tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to hear Him. And the Pharisees and the scribes grumbled, saying, 'This man receives sinners and eats with them.' 

"So He told them this parable: 'What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing.

"'And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, 'Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.'” 

Jesus came to earth, died on the cross, and rose again so that sinners could repent and be saved. His mission is for the lost to be found and to be brought into the victorious family of God.

We must continue praying for those who don’t know God and are still searching...needing to be found. But, we must also remember that we are all sinners in need of grace. Today, let's be mindful not to be like the "religious" Pharisees who didn’t understand repentance and questioned Jesus for associating with sinners. Instead, let’s decide to have a heart like Jesus. If the Cubs are able to win again, there will be a big celebration for Brett Anderson. With that in mind, let's try to imagine the indescribable celebration in heaven when someone turns from their former life and begins to follow Jesus. I’m Bryce Johnson and you can unpack that!

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, I pray that I would have a heart for the lost and continue to be grateful that I’ve been found. I pray You would use me in ways to help draw people to Yourself. Thank you for Your grace. It’s in Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

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