“The Ninety and Nine” is a cherished hymn of the faith written by Ira Sankey, the beloved traveling partner of D.L. Moody. Sankey stumbled upon the words in a newspaper on a train one day. He was so impressed he saved the clipping and put it into his jacket pocket.

Later that night, D.L. Moody spoke of Jesus the Good Shepherd and His great love for lost sheep. At the end of the service, Moody turned to Sankey and asked, “Do you have a good solo number to go with this message?” Sankey didn’t, but the Holy Spirit reminded him about that newspaper clipping in his pocket. So he pulled it out, set it upon the piano, and began to make up a fitting arrangement—all on the spot. Those words and music remain together as the song we enjoy, “The Ninety and Nine.”

I treasure this song, not only because it tells me how much Jesus loves me—enough to leave everything and seek my salvation—but it also gives me the same burden to reach other lost sheep and bring them into the fold.

Perhaps you feel like a lost sheep today. You’re struggling to find your way. There is a Good Shepherd Who loves you and died for you that you might be one of His sheep.

Will you come to Him today?

The love of God is like the Amazon River flowing down to water one daisy. – Unknown Author

Devotional by Dr. James A. Scudder