NIV Luke 19:10 “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.”
The concept of being lost is not one the occupies much thought in our culture. There are still a few TV preachers and fundamentalist who use it as phrase to get an amen, raise money, or push a new program of “evangelism”, but “being lost” is far from being a social concern. Church people, “saved” people, are not the dominant voice in the public square anymore. The church itself has become more concerned with its material survival and cultural preservation than in being the presence of our Lord who “came to seek and to save what was lost”.
As relationships grow more shallow and transitory and our purpose in life more driven by consumption, “lost-ness” has become an idea delegated to the category of a religious vestige. Being lost or having lost as it relates to God doesn’t matter much. In an age of “no fear” the language of being lost is not a motivator for seeking God.
So what do we do?
First we pray. We pray for ourselves. We pray that we become sensitive, burdened, and filled with a desire to be what the church is intended to be:
NIV 1 Corinthians 12:27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
We need to pray that God will give us determination to do what Jesus came to do in seeking the lost. We must also pray for those who are separated from God.
Secondly, we must take inventory of our own spiritual growth. We must: (Philippians 2:12) continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling- and grow in our desire for perfection. It is this desire for perfection, of a closer, more confident walk with our Lord that will keep our focus on God’s desire.
Third, we must be witnesses that are (Matthew 10:16) shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. We must learn how to be sensitive to the actions of the Holy Spirit as God’s prevenient grace works on the hardened hearts that live in darkness around us. We must be ready to listen without judgment. We must be will to support without conditions. We must learn to accept people as they are and them help them to discover just how much God loves them and what they have lost in not having this relationship that is the purpose of our creation.
People are lost. People suffer. People need. Jesus cares. ( John 11:35) Jesus wept. Do we?