“See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven.

“What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off? And if he finds it, truly I tell you, he is happier about that one sheep than about the ninety-nine that did not wander off. In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should perish.”

Matthew 18:10-14


The above is a parable Jesus told his disciples about a sheep that had been lost. Through the story he speaks to all of us who might at times be wounded, vulnerable, exhausted. Unable to keep up, we become separated from the safety of the herd. Separated from Jesus, our Shepherd.

We’ve all been there at times and we probably ended up feeling quite alone and lonely.

Although he has another ninety-nine sheep with him, the Good Shepherd noticed that one sheep had gone missing. In concern, he left the others while he went searching for the one. Though he had many, he wouldn’t let that one perish. Each one mattered to him.

Through the sheep’s story, Jesus shows how God cares for us—like children–weak, and dependent on him. He tells the disciples that these “little ones” must not be despised. By despised he meant “looked down on, considered inferior, not really worth caring for.”

Care equally for each one, Jesus says, for the weak ones as much as those who are stronger.

This story is about anyone who is in need of Jesus’ care. And aren’t we always?  The story is about you and how your Shepherd cares for you.

We all become like that lost sheep at times–vulnerable in life, distant from God, not sure what to believe. At times like that, we will need the Good Shepherd to rescue us.

We long for him to bring us back to his fold. Back to safety. And he will do that for us. He will leave everything to search for you and bring you home.

It’s because you matter to him.