You can find many religions in our world and they all seem to have one thing in common: People seeking God. They seek God through any number of philosophical or cultural practices, trying to do what ever it takes to make a connection with God.
But Christianity is different: God is seeking us. This is what Christmas is all about. It is God pursuing humanity. The coming of the Christ child has nothing to do with trying to unravel the mysteries of God through personal or intellectual or mystical abilities. In that little child in the manger, God tood the initiative and revealed Himself to us.
There is a story of a young man traveling around the countryside in a spiffy sports car. He screeched to a halt when he saw an old gentleman at a crossroads. The young man shouted at him, “Do you know how far it is to the city?” “No.” “Well then, can you tell me what time it is?” “Can’t say that I can, young man.” “You don’t know much, do you?” “No, but I’m not the one who is lost.”
We call come across people who know an awful lot, but they are very lost. And many times, they don’t know that they are lost. All of us have been in the “lost” category at some time. People are made for God, but they have lost God, and they may be driving around looking good and sounding intelligent, but they are totally disoriented. Sometimes they feel like life isn’t making a lot of sense, but they don’t know why. That’s what we mean by lostness.
The word “lost” in Scripture is sometimes translated as ‘perish.’ To perish is to slowly deteriorate. Can’t we relate to this? Sometimes we sit down and look at our lives in light of where we were ten years ago, and we’re horrified to discover how far we’ve come. Yet we are hard pressed to see how we got to where we are. It’s been a slow, insidious, careless, undisciplined deterioration of spirit. Sometimes we look at habits that dominate us, and we remember when we thought we has so much control over our lives. That’s lostness.
Wherever youlook, people’s lives seem to be unraveling. They make a wrong decision or take a wrong turn, and suddenly their lives are in shambles. There are many people who have started life’s journey on the wrong premise, have based actions on wrong conclusions, and who will finish up at the wrong destination uless something changes dramatically. That’s what lostness means.
The good news is that God came looking for people who are lost and wandering and disoriented. He came for us.