Birth has been on my mind quite a bit lately. That should not be too much of a surprise considering the timing my ﬁrst child’s birth. I keep going through the emotions leading up to the big day. All of the excitement and anticipation, as well as the nerves and uncertainty. I have so looked forward to very few things as much as I have that day. On that day I get to hold a newborn child in my arms and for the ﬁrst time know what it means to be a dad.
I think of the excitement that I feel, and yet it pales in comparison to the joy our Father knows at the true birth, the second birth, of anyone who comes to faith in Christ Jesus. In his conversation with Nicodemus in John 3, Jesus explains to him that only those who have experienced the natural birth and then the true birth in the Holy Spirit can enter into the kingdom of God.
Christ compares this true birth to a ﬂock of sheep, demonstrating that those who have not been born again are like a sheep that has wandered away from the ﬂock. The Good Shepherd does not waste any time. Instead, he pursues the lost sheep, actively searching high and low to ﬁnd it and brings it home.
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. (Luke 15:5-7)
Consider the joy that our heavenly Father had when he found you when you were born again. The Word plainly tells us that he rejoices in ﬁnding those who were lost. He rejoices at the true birth of his children. God knows my joy in the moment of my daughter’s birth, and I can begin to understand just how much it means when a sinner is born again.
We who are born again comprise the Church, which is the family of God. We have been found by the Good Shepherd, and we have been called to go out and to minister to those who might also be found in him. This is an opportunity for us to rejoice with the Good Shepherd when a sheep is found. It is our chance to rejoice with the Heavenly Father when his child is born again.
Let us then go and make disciples. Let Spencerport Wesleyan be the church that God has called it to be. Let those who have been born again be the vessels through which the Holy Spirit brings the lost to the true birth. There is rejoicing in heaven at the birth of every single one. For the Father of inﬁnite love and grace has found those that he has sought.