Monday, September 24, 2012

Short devotion: Lost and Found - Luke 15:32

Luke 15:32     “But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.”

We have a Lost and Found box in our church office. It’s full of coffee mugs, glasses, umbrellas, books, and jackets. Every now and then, we place the box out in the welcome area to see if anyone claims the items. After a couple of Sundays, we empty the box and take the unclaimed items to the Goodwill thrift store. Within a week, the empty lost and found box has a few items in it and the cycle begins again. I guess that so long as the church is open, people will always be leaving things behind.

We also have lost and found people in the pews. At some point in their lives, they have lost themselves to poor choices and bad circumstances. Some of them have had addiction problems for years, while others are just going through some really tough times. In the midst of losing their way, they have been found again by Jesus. He patiently restores them to God’s goodness and encourages our church members to embrace those who were once lost, but who are now back among us.

Getting lost is something that we can all relate to because, at some crucial time in our lives, something unexpected, crazy, or painful happens to us that leads us away from God. The good news is that we don’t have to remain lost because Christ is in the seeking business for lost souls. If we let Him, He will find us. If we pray to Him, He will restore us.

Perhaps you are feeling lost and isolated, alone and vulnerable today. It may be that your life isn’t following the plan that you had or that your expectations, hopes, and dreams may have been recently dashed. In the midst of all that troubles you, please know this: Christ is seeking to help you, embrace you, encourage you, and restore you to God’s love, favor, and kingdom. You are not alone; you have not been abandoned by God.

Questions for personal reflection

Am I currently experiencing something that makes me feel isolated from God? Am I willing to turn to Jesus and ask Him for help?

Prayer:            Lord Jesus, You are aware of everything that is presently happening in my life. You know my trials and tribulations, my issues and problems. In the midst of all that disturbs me and makes me feel lost, please come and find me, seek and comfort me, help and guide me. In Your Holy Name, I pray. Amen.

John Stuart is the pastor of Erin Presbyterian Church in Knoxville, Tennessee. If you would like to comment on today’s message, please send him an email to

Today’s image is John’s 2012 Christmas card drawing. It’s called “Starry Starry Night” and feature Christ in the manger with a little touch of Vincent in the night sky. If you would like to view a larger version of this drawing, please click on the following link:

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