What have you lost?

I have lost keys, money, and sun glasses. I have lost track of time and lost patience. I have lost my footing, my temper, my self-control, and countless pounds (all I which I have managed to find again!). Our teeth, hair, memory, and independence can be lost to injury, age, or dementia. We can lose loved ones in death, and we can lose ourselves in pleasure or pain. We can lose our courage, our joy, our faith or our hope when we lose our perspective. We can be lost at sea because we have lost our way. There are lost cities, lost causes, and lost opportunities. I have heard that man is the only creature that runs faster when he’s lost. Being lost is scary. Being found means that you are back where you belong.

The English language doesn’t differentiate between the different kinds of “lost”. Some things are lost because of inattention. Some are lost because they are willingly left them behind. Some are lost because they are not a priority. Any loss will leave a void that will either be intentionally or unconsciously filled.

There is loss in the Bible as well. Adam and Eve lost relationship with God and an Eden address because they intentionally chose to disobey. Joseph lost his freedom. Saul’s father lost his donkeys. Enemies of God’s people lost confidence when they saw the power of the Hebrew God. Jesus told parables about lost sheep, lost coins, and lost sons. Satan lost his citizenship in heaven because of his pride. His goal for your life is that you lose heaven like he did.

Jesus understands loss. He intentionally abandoned heaven to be born as a baby on earth. He wept at Lazarus’ grave and at the sight of the city that would take his life. He willingly lost his life because he believed our salvation was worth it. He described himself as a shepherd seeking the lost, and he told of the joy in heaven when the “lost” are “found”.

Some things we’ve lost need to be relegated to our past and stop influencing our present. Others need to be redeemed and restored. God’s perspective can help us know the difference. Too many Christians lose their passion for God because they substitute service and obligation and ritual for relationship. Sometimes we need to find our way again; sometimes we need to stop running and allow ourselves to be caught up in the love of the God who seeks us. God specializes in lost causes. He has spent all of history seeking his people so that he could save them from being lost. May this day find you intentionally seeking the presence and perspective of God. May you lose yourself in a glimpse of his unconditional love for you, and may you find that no matter what you have lost, God is all that you need.

Luke 19:10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.