"Love's never met a lost cause." This phrase of lyrics from One Step Away by Casting Crowns speaks volumes to me and ignites memories from years gone by.
When I was a teenager, my father, a pastor and retired State Trooper, was asked to help a friend with a youth camp for inner city kids. Naturally, I tagged along.
"Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love." - Ephesians 4:2
What I remember so vividly to this day is a young teen who felt lost, forgotten, and misunderstood. He quit school just weeks prior to his graduation despite his excellent grades. I remember spending hours listening to this young man talk, making him promise me he would return to school and graduate (which he did), and simply letting him know someone believed in him and truly cared about him.
"My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you." - John 15:12
What breaks my heart to this day is that an adult counselor at the camp told me not to waste my time on this young man. I was appalled! I may have been a young teen but I knew that was NOT what God wanted me to do. To God, no one is a waste of time or effort. God wanted me to listen, to believe, to show His love in very real ways, and to certainly never give up because too many others had already done just that. These young people knew plenty about hurt, brokenness, and heartache. What they needed was to see the beauty God brings from the brokenness, the strength He gives so we can persevere even though we are weak, and a love like none they could ever imagine nor would ever experience but for the grace of God.
"Do everything in love" - 1 Corinthians 16:14
Every time I hear the lyrics: "Love's never met a lost cause," I know that this is exactly what God's grace is all about. His grace is about loving people who feel unlovable, it is about believing in people who feel tossed aside, its about listening even when there is only silence, and it is about seeing the hurting person who is lost and just needs to know they are not a lost cause because God's grace is more than enough and His love is deeper, higher, wider, and farther than they could ever imagine. They will know this because we take the time to be the difference, because we know love never met a lost cause, because we know that to God every person matters. Never give up hope and always keep praying even if it takes thirty years or more for the answers to be revealed.
"Love builds [us] up" - 1 Corinthians 8:1
"Rico" this post is dedicated to you. Thirty years later and I still believe in you, my precious friend. I know God has great things in store for you whenever you are willing to run to Him and not from Him. His love for you runs deep, wide, high, and far. I still love you too, sweet brother! You matter because love and God's grace have never met a lost cause! To God, you are a priceless treasure, my friend, far better than the finest gold or gems. My heart overflows with joy at having spoken with you last night!