Allee, Allee in Free

The Very Rev. Tracey Lind

St. James the Fisherman, Wellfleet, MA

September 11, 2022

Proper 19C

Exodus 32:7–14, Psalm 51:1-11, 1 Timothy 1:12–17, Luke 15:1–10

Do you remember watching first responders struggle to rescue survivors and recover victims after the World Trade Center and Oklahoma City bombings? Do you recall waiting to see who was dug out alive in earthquakes, rescued by boats during hurricanes and flooding, and driven out in pickup trucks through fires across the globe? Did you fight back tears as a young airman shot down in Bosnia told his story of hiding in the woods hoping for rescue, when a young Rwandan woman recounted living in a bathroom for three months waiting for the genocide to end, as thousands stampeded for the airport in Baghdad last summer, or as hundreds of civilians walked out of a steel plant in Mariupol, Ukraine? Did you hold your breath as emergency workers struggled to find and free a Texas toddler who had fallen down a narrow pipe in the ground while playing in her backyard, as thirty-three Chilean miners emerged after seventeen days buried underground, or as twelve youngsters and their coach were rescued from a cave in Thailand?

What is it about stories of the lost and found? Why are we drawn so powerfully to them, like magnets? Perhaps, the answer is simply that we are all afraid of being lost or losing someone we love. And if being lost is one of our deepest fears, then being found is probably one of our innermost joys.

Truth be told, most of us roam around life, lost and hoping to be found. Much of the time, we can and do hide it well. But somewhere deep down inside each of us, there is a lost and vulnerable child who wants to curl up into a ball and cry for Mommy or Daddy. . . .