Ralph Milton tells of the teacher who, for reasons of her own, asked the kids one day, “If all the bad children were painted red and all the good children were painted green, which color would you be?”
Think about it. What color would you be? Red or Green? It is a tough question isn’t it when you pose only two options.
One very wise child answered the teacher: “Striped”
The reason I am going on about this point is simple. It seems to me that in the frame of the story – everyone but Jesus is striped. It is the same in the world today. We are a curious combination of the lost and the found. We are striped. We are, in some sense, not completely complete. It is hard language, this language of lost and found, especially for folks in the middle, as most of us are most of the time. It seems too absolute.
Rarely are we completely lost. And rarely are we completely found. There is always a part of us that needs to be dragged and cajoled into the light, and there is always a part of us that is already there in the light. For some it is more and for some it is less, but always some part.
The wonderful thing is – that God wants us to enter fully into the light. The wonderful thing is that God wants to bless us all richly to keep us safe, to make us strong, to help us be like a Shepherd who really cares for his sheep, or like a poor widow who really values all her coins.
Richard Fairchild, Seeking the Lost