TITLE: Valueless to Valued
DATE: February 4, 2019
TEXT: Romans 5:8 -(ESV) - but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
A few years ago Pam and I received a phone call from our youngest daughter and her husband.
They were calling from an animal shelter where they were about to adopt a young dog, a pitbull-mix. The puppy had been raised in a drug-dealer’s house and had, as far as anyone knew, always been chained up. Kris and Jim asked my opinion on the matter. I complimented them on their desire to help a dog in need, but gave them failing marks on their choice of mutts.
“Everyone knows”, I warned, “by nature, pit bulls are dangerous,. I cannot imagine how bad a dog would be if it has been robbed of human contact during its early months.” “Do not”, I encouraged, “adopt that dog. She’s probably a walking time bomb.”
Long story short, they brought Millie-the-pitbull home from the shelter about eight years ago.
She has been as good, as loving, as gentle a dog as anyone is likely to find. And as far as that “time bomb’, we are still waiting for it to go off. My suspicions are: that explosion is never going to happen and Millie-the-pitbull is going to be a beloved part of our family for as long as she lives.
I don’t believe Sarah Porter can say the same thing about her rescues.
You see Sarah Porter doesn’t rescue dogs or cats. Driving across New York Connecticut and New Jersey, she rescues hermit crabs. Yes, you heard that correctly. She rescues hermit crabs. So far she has about 30 of them. Some were given to her by previous owners; some had been rescued from the wild. (Native to the Caribbean, hermit crabs have a tendency to die in New York winters.)
Commenting on her preoccupation with hermit crabs, Sarah recognizes they are not the most responsive animals in the world and would hardly make for an ideal family pet. They don’t fetch, they don’t curl up on your lap and purr. They don’t find people buried in a collapsed building and the Federal Government doesn’t have a single hermit crab working at the airports sniffing out drugs.
Indeed, Sarah, herself, has said,“I think in the big scheme of things, it may look kind of silly. They’re just these little hermit crabs.”
You know, if there is anyone who can understand Sarah, it has to be the Triune God. He has made it His business to rescue sinful humanity from damnation. It is an amazing desire on His part. When He set us up originally, He gave us all we needed and asked that we follow only one rule.
Back them we failed miserably… and we’ve kept on failing miserably since Adam and Eve ate of the forbidden fruit. When the Lord sent His only Son into this world to take our place and do for us all those things we could not do for ourselves, He was rejected, arrested, lied about, spit upon and nailed to a cross where He died carrying the sins of humanity.
Today the risen Redeemer sends the Holy Spirit out into the world to call sinners to their Savior. With faith, all transgressions are forgiven, and we who had once been worse than worthless, are rescued, saved and adopted into the family of faith.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, we often confess that we are poor, miserable sinners. That is so. But, I give thanks that, because of Jesus’ sacrifice we have a new value and have been adopted into the family of faith. May others be given that same peace and joy. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.
Today’s devotion was inspired by various articles, amongst which is the one written by the Good News Network on January 8, 2019 . Those who wish may check out this link which was, at the time of writing, fully active: https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/woman-rescues-hermit-crabs-across-tristate-area/
The music which introduces and concludes our devotions was written by Guy Baumann, one of my long-ago confirmands. He is singing with three brothers. This song comes from the album: The Baumann Brothers which may be ordered here: http://thebaumannbrothers.com/index.html