LOST! That word can bring anxiety and fear in an instant. It can bring a sinking feeling, gut wrenching emotion, instant feelings of blame, stupidity, anger, and often tears. There is nothing to compare with the feelings of a parent when they realize their child is lost in a crowd of people, missing on a playground, or seemingly just disappeared while in a store. When the door of a house is open and a child doesn’t respond to your call for them panic can set in instantly especially if a body of water or a pool is nearby. Instant fear for most people would be a journey into a city and a wrong turn that drops you into an unfamiliar area that is obviously a place you don’t want to be after dark or even at the present time as you see incidents happening that would strike fear into anyone. Anxiety and fear is brought on when you finish dinner in a restaurant and then realize your wallet or key keys are missing and probably lost. LOST is not a good word for most of us. Just think about your blank computer screen when you try to pull up a very important file on your computer and it doesn’t appear no matter what you do. That file may be gone forever.
LOST! There are millions, probably billions of people in this world who are spiritually lost and on their way to hell and I believe that probably most Christians never give that fact a thought. It could be that most of us have family, friends and neighbors who are spiritually lost and we never have an emotional reaction to that fact. We would move heaven and hell to find a lost child, a lost wallet, or a lost computer file but we would not move across the street, make a phone call to invite someone to church, or even take time to pray for those we say we really like or love. God is interested in lost things and lost people. In fact God is so concerned about those who are spiritually lost that He actually did move heaven and earth to solve the problem of mankind’s lost condition. The gospel writer Luke said, “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost,” (Luke 19:10 NIV). Spiritually lost people are so important to God that He actually sent His Son to pay the penalty for lost people (those separated from a Holy God by sin) and to make a pathway back to God. If a person was lost in the woods and suddenly a guide showed up who could lead them to safety they would quickly and willingly follow the guide. God sent a guide to lead spiritually lost people out of their lost situation and His name is Jesus. As the gospel of John reveals Jesus is the way back to God, Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me,” (John 14:6 NIV). God has called each Christian to be a part of God’s search party to find the lost of the world and to take them to the guide who can bring them to spiritual safety. We know what it is to be lost and we know the relief that comes when we are found.