I carry with me a pocket Bible. One that fits perfectly into my jeans …. knowing that I can reach for it throughout the day.
The Message New Testament pocket bible.
It was pretty beat up, as I had marked in it, sat on it and folded the edges on it many times. But it went with me wherever I went.
It made the journey to Peak Challenge 2009. It was there that God used this little pocket Bible to give a man an experience that he will never forget.
As we set up for camp the Thursday evening that we arrived, I was busy getting my gear out of my car and the tent set up. I had forgotten that I had placed my pocket Bible on the top of the SUV.After getting things set up, we settled in for the night, as the next day we were going to be hiking Mt Bierstadt and Mt Evans.
5:00 am came quicker than we wanted. We rolled out of the tents and got into the vehicles, on our way to hike a few 14,000 foot peaks that day.
My pocket Bible was still on the top of my SUV. I did not notice it and we drove off,
That Bible was about to be carefully placed by God on the highway for someone to see.
Less than one hour after we drove off, another group of men from Peak Challenge headed out to go whitewater rafting. About a mile from our camp, one man noted later to me that he had spotted what he thought to be a small book in the road, but they had no time to turn around and check it out. Another car from our group saw the same thing and decided to turn around, as the book was open and the pages were not blowing.
It was too late, for yet another group of our men had been walking along the road and saw the pocket Bible. It was described to me later as laying in the middle of the road, with the Bible open to a certain page and yet the pages were not blowing open even on that windy morning. The man stopped and picked it up and took it back to camp with him.
He was about to enter into an amazing journey that day.
The Bible had been opened up to Matthew 25 – The Sheep and the Goats.
This was no coincidence, as this man and some other men had just been talking about Matthew 25 and what God was saying in this scripture.
He read the notes and markings that I had made in that section…. and he began to explore further all of the other sections in the pocket New Testament that I had marked up and noted. He spent the whole afternoon contemplating, reading and thinking about all of these sections. He had looked in the Bible to see if he could find some identification of the owner so that he could return it and thank the owner for a transformational experience he had with God that afternoon. But he could not find anything. He continued to read and to truly hear and feel God’s presence in his life… a life that was filled with questions and pain.
And then he found it. Later in the day, he unstuck two pages in the front of the Bible and there in black ink was the owner’s name – MY name.
As our group returned from hiking later that afternoon, a man that I did not know well approached me in camp and asked if he could speak to me privately. I knew him to be a man that was part of Peak Challenge and had made the journey with some other men that I knew. Maybe he was upset about something that was done wrong in camp? Did he have an issue with another man there?
“David?” he said. “I want to thank you for the best afternoon of my life.”
His story began to unfold as he explained to me how he found the Bible, what chapter it had been opened up to and the experience he had in reading all of my notes and markings. It truly had impacted this man. He was clearly touched by the Holy Spirit’s presence that day. He had been “lost” in many ways that day before finding the Bible and was now “found”. We prayed and I thanked him for the Bible. As I walked away, I could not contain the joy and the humility that I had, knowing that my little pocket Bible had been lost and found by a man that once had been lost but now was found. God met him right there in camp that day with my pocket Bible.
Lost and Found.