Please read Luke 15:1-24 (Click Here)
Jesus explains how God loves us so dearly and is longing to find us with these three illustrations; lost sheep, lost coin, lost son. This is the main theme; unknowingly or knowingly when we sin, we drift away from God and hence are lost. When we realize we are headed in the wrong direction and turn back, we will be surprised to learn that God has been looking for us all long. There is great rejoicing when one lost sinner turns back and is found! In the third story, something to note is God equates lostness to deadness and being found to becoming alive. Another way to look at this is when we are lost, we are spiritually dead and do not have a relationship with God. When we are found, we become alive to an interactive relationship with God, which is eternal life.
A New Perspective
Who am I? What is my purpose? What is the meaning of life? Sounds familiar? These are some profound spiritual questions that don’t seem to have a simple or convincing answer. Not knowing why we exist can make us feel like our life is meaningless or purposeless. They point to our lostness.
The missing question: It is important to ask one more question before answering those questions: Who created me? The moment we grasp we did not initiate the creation and that God is our creator, things gradually begin to fall in place. Understanding the heart of our Maker can help clarify why we were brought into existence: our purpose. No matter how distant we feel from God, each one of us is so precious for Him that He is relentlessly searching for us. The real question is, am I willing to let God find me?
Karma, Kismat, or My fault: Some of us may believe that it’s our past Karma that has put us in this disadvantaged position with God, perhaps like the sheep that just wandered away unknowingly and got lost. Others might think it’s our Kismat (fate). We feel helpless to do anything to connect with God, like the coin that got lost. And still, others know that’s our fault because we deliberately went against our conscience to do wrong things. Like the lost son, we deliberately separated from the father instead of honoring him. No matter what has caused the lostness, we can be confident that God seeks to find us and will not stop till we are found. The real question is, am I willing to turn around?
It’s our choice to turn around: No matter how trapped we feel in our lostness, we can be so thankful that God is searching for us. As a result of that, we do have the choice to turn back to God. In the third story, we see that lostness is separation from God (spiritual deadness), and on the flip side, when we turn back to God, allowing God to find us, the union with God equated to Nitya Jeevan (Eternal Life).
When reading a passage like this, it can get very personal, and it is OK to expose our deepest needs to God because God loves us unconditionally and already knows everything about us. The question is can we allow God to break through our internal barriers to meet us at the point of need.
- What are some things that stand out for you as you read and reflected on this passage?
- Have you ever considered questions like ‘Who am I?’ or ‘What is the purpose of life?’ and tried to get an answer?
- Do any of these 3 examples (lost sheep, lost coin, or lost son) come close to describing where you are? If they don’t, can you think of another example of how you relate to God?
- What are some of the barriers you feel you have in turning back to God?
- Have you previously heard that God is actually searching for you?
Dear Jesus, I will never fully understand the depth of your love and persistence to find me. Let nothing stand in the way (feel free to fill in with any barrier God reveals to you personally, like pride, fear, shame, guilt, or anything else). I am turning around towards you. Please find me.
- Go to Yeshu Samaj Help and ask any follow-up questions or connect with others in our community.
- Explore for yourselves by watching the film Life of Jesus in which you will also find many stories of changed lives. It is available in the following languages: English, Hindi, Gujarathi, Punjabi, Marathi, or Urdu.