I’ll never forget fishing with my grandfather deep in the majestic Rocky Mountains of Colorado. As a city kid, raised in the urban streets of Denver, I looked forward to this annual fishing and camping trip.
It was always the highlight of my year—just grandma, grandpa, and me for two whole weeks every summer.
We’d stake out our camping spot, get everything set up, fish all day, and sleep all night—not in a tent, but in the camper shell on my grandpa’s bright-yellow Ford F-150 truck.
Every night, grandpa would make a huge fire, and every day he and I would trek somewhere to go fishing.
Although I didn’t particularly enjoy fishing, I loved being with my grandpa.
We would fish all day, catch our limit, and head back to camp. Guess what we ate for dinner? The trout we’d caught that day.
LOST IN THE WILDERNESS
One day, while grandpa and I were fishing on a river about a quarter-mile down a steep ravine, he sent me back up to the truck to get more fishing tackle.
To be honest, I was nervous.
I was a nervous kid anyway, but being away from my grandpa, deep in the heart of the mountains, even for 10 minutes, terrified me.
As a kid with a very active imagination, I pictured a mountain lion around every corner, a wolf behind every tree, and a bear behind every boulder.
As I climbed above one of the final ridges before I got back to the truck, my worst nightmare came true. A wild animal stood right in front of me—literally a foot from my frightened face.
It was a little lamb, staring straight into my eyes.
After my heart started beating again, I realized that somehow this little lamb had gotten separated from its flock. I also realized that if I didn’t catch it, it would die out there, from one of the many predators that filled the woods.
I lunged to catch it, but it was faster than I was, and it sprinted away. I chased it as far as I could without losing my bearings, but in seconds it had disappeared into the thick forest around me.
A HOLY MISSION
I never forgot that little lamb. I didn’t have a camera with me, but the mental picture I took that day is an ever-present reminder of Jesus’s words in Matthew 18:12:
‘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?’
It also reminds me of Jesus’s words in Matthew 9:36:
When He saw the crowds, He had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.
Heading back to our fishing spot that day, I was sad and somber because of that lost, surely-going-to-die little lamb.
I can still see it in my mind’s eye and feel the surge of energy as I lunged for it. I can still feel the sadness when I realized there was no way I’d be able to catch it and save it.
Perhaps that’s part of the reason why I’m so passionate about reaching the lost, especially the young ones—teenagers—with the Gospel.
These little lambs are lost in the wilderness with predators all around them (the world, the flesh, and the devil). We must rescue them before it’s too late.
That’s what Dare 2 Share is all about.
That’s what drives me to rescue the lost lambs and bring them back to the Shepherd of their souls.
Join me in this holy quest—before it’s too late.