Lost and Found

As a child, I grew up learning the concept of "fairness". My parents made sure that my brother and I always got equal treatment at Christmas, birthdays, etc. and we were always encouraged to watch out for people that would take advantage of our generosity (giving of our time, etc.).
Consequently, in reading Luke 15 and the parables of the lost sheep, lost coin and lost son, I can't help but have "flashbacks". I am amazed at the concern Jesus has for the "lost" in each of these stories. Wouldn't it be cool to have that kind of compassion?

My favorite is the parable of the lost son - no, not because of my brother :) , he's always been a good guy - because of the wonderful picture of grace to the repentant sinner who humbly comes back to God (Luke 15:11-31). Think of how much inner strength it took for the father in this story to forgive his son for squandering all of his inheritance on worldly pleasures and welcome him back with open arms. How often do we see this sort of compassion and forgiveness displayed in our world today?