Follow Us

Finding lost things

I was jogging yesterday when suddenly I was joined by a couple of black Labradors in full stride. They hung with me for nearly two miles before we returned to what I assumed was their home. But try as I might, I couldn’t get them to stay there – they just kept following me.   Fortunat…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes
I was jogging yesterday when suddenly I was joined by a couple of black Labradors in full stride. They hung with me for nearly two miles before we returned to what I assumed was their home. But try as I might, I couldn’t get them to stay there – they just kept following me.
Fortunately the couple living there came outside and explained, “Yeah, they’re nice, well-kept dogs, but they don’t belong to us. They’re lost and have been here for a few days.”
Lost things – Jesus had a fondness for them. Just look at the scene where Jesus is talking to a bunch of sinners (as Luke tells it in chapter 15). The Pharisees don’t like this. They don’t get his heart for lost things, so he tells them three stories. There’s a lost sheep, a lost coin, and a lost son. When you lose something you own, you want to get it back – and that’s how Jesus feels about us. We were lost but now we’re found. Jesus is a shepherd looking for lost sheep. He’s constantly looking for and finding lost hearts, hearts that have been tossed every which way by life’s hurricanes.

Because he wants us to become searchers and finders of lost hearts too, I think he gives us a special grace if we’ll trust him to help us practice finding lost things. I was with my daughter Talia in Vogel State Park. She lost her earrings somewhere and had know idea where. We prayed and asked him to lead us to the earrings. Immediately, he led us right to where they were. We were so amazed – it was eerie to be led like that.

Years later, I was swimming in the Caribbean surf with Tom Davis. A wave came along and washed away his glasses. The surf was murky and choppy – they were long gone. But I prayed, reached my hand down, and miraculously, grabbed hold of them.

It seems everyone has got a story like that one. Greg Sailors was on a family mission trip and had a similar experience: “One of our guys lost his glasses in a shallow river. We came out of the river. We prayed and went back like an hour later and swam around and found them.”

Mark and Kathy Lucas shared a similar story – they had lost their keys in a one acre slope of snow where they’d been sledding. Mark prayed, walked, stuck his hand in the snow and pulled them out!

We who were lost in selfishness and shame know what it feels like to be found. We were disoriented, feeling panicky and without bearings, lost in the deep woods of a life that wasn’t working. But Jesus is a searcher and a finder. He is our shepherd; he knew we’d gone missing and went looking for us. And what he finds, he keeps.

So many people have lost their way in life. They hate it, but there they are, stuck, feeling marooned by fate. More of us need to start imitating Jesus – we need to practice searching for lost hearts.

Comments (5)

  • Ok, I have had atray animals in my life for years. Now we are blessed with stray women…Seth, God is one that will move in a great way and it is not ours to wonder why. He needs warriors to bring his dream into a reality…..who is game from the youth? Step up and be bold, you can do it!

  • Thanks Seth for this reminder. It prompted me to reflect again on the concept of being “lost”.

    The word lost can among other things mean “no longer held or posessed” and has it’s “genesis” so to speak back in well–Genesis.

    Mankind literally had it all. And then avarice sucked away the intimacy of the special relationship where God, man and a woman walked around together naked in the freedom of fellowship never cold even on the cool mornings of dew filled delight.

    Humanity lost it all.

    But the Living God wouldn’t leave the great divide of sin unbridged and the rest of the story of redemption is the greatest story ever told.

    We fail to search out lost people because it’s too hard, often messy, doesn’t have immediate rewards but perhaps more vitally comes too close to home.

    Even in our “saved state” we are lost in the sense of being aliens on the earth as it says in Hebrews as we are longing for our country…our tribe…our “home.”

    Prodigals, wanderers and leaders of the human insurrection have a special place in the heart of Jesus. For mankind was more than a mission for the Savior.

    We are His pearl of great price as is Christ for us in return. He gave His all for us to show us the way of doing the same with Him.

    This “great exchange” is all about lost things and a very intimate view of them.

    That’s one of the reasons why I love the Catholic notion of the patron saint of “lost things” who is, if memory serves me– Saint Anthony.

    With passion to find something lost young and old alike would pray:

    “Something is lost…it cannot be found…please St.Anthony…look around!”

    Whatever your theology it is clear God “looks around” for lost things.

    I know. I’m one of them.

    And He found me.

  • I traded contact info w/ the couple who’s watching them and we’ve got “lost dog” signs up all over the neighborhood.

  • Steve (@meintweet)

    Way I look at it, God was given you two running buddies and companions for your yappy puppy.

    By the way, enjoying Listening Prayer with Gabe and the gang.

Comments are closed.

Subscribe to Radical Living:

Receive updates on the latest posts as Seth Barnes covers many topics like spiritual formation, what if means to be a christian, how to pray, and more. Radical Living blog is all about a call to excellence in ministry, church, and leadership -as the hands and feet of Jesus.

Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.

© Adventures In Missions. All rights reserved. | Privacy Policy | RSS Feed | Sitemap