This week, we are meditating on Luke 15 and the parables associated with the lost being found. Earlier this week, I reflected on the sheep and I’ve thought long and hard about the prodigal son, but I’d breezed over the lost coin. Today, my eye fell on verses 8-10 and saw them in a new way. I read about the woman who lost a day’s wages when a silver coin went missing in her house. I read about the way she lit a candle in her otherwise dark and shadowy house and turned it upside down until the coin was found. She was so overcome with joy at finding the coin that she called all her friends and neighbors together to rejoice and celebrate together.
As I read those words for perhaps the tenth or twentieth time in my life, they struck me as very personal today. I recognized myself in those words of Jesus; I WAS that lost coin at one point. My existence was in the shadows, despite my perception that told me I was in the light. I was hidden away from the light, desperately trying to remain in that state because I thought it was who I was and where I was meant to be. That was me, until Jesus shone his light on me. The beam of that light was at once shocking and joyous: all of my distorted thinking was exposed and I realized my need; I realized how desperately I wanted to allow the one from whom that light came to sweep me up and carry me away.
I think that the part of the parable that really struck me today as my life was the way the woman called her friends and neighbors together to celebrate finding her coin. It reminded me of my baptism. When I decided I wanted to be baptized, my church family all came together and celebrated with me, rejoicing as with the woman who found her coin. My spiritual family rejoiced that this coin that had been lost was found! How marvelous! All these many years later, the day I was baptized remains one of my most cherished memories of my walk with Jesus. It was a day of celebration, as it should be.