“If I were a [insert missing item(s)] , where would I be?”
How many times, in the search of a lost item, do we attempt to get into the “mind” of the item, to find it? We stop, get quiet, stand still, look around very attentively, only to discover our lost items will play peekaboo. This activity is a way to think about where we haven’t looked for the lost things, to encourage us to scour and look everywhere.
Another challenge presented by the parables in Luke 15 — lost sheep, lost coin, and prodigal son — is the mindset we have in the lost-and-found process… or, lost-to-found. I submit from the reading that we are proficient at thinking lost, and at times, subscribe to a Christian faith that encourages lost thinking.
Let me be clear: If we are born again, if we safely arrived at saving faith, then we are found. Any lost condition after salvation is subordinate…and we can be found in different ways as we place our faith in Jesus.
We think like the lost sheep. We think like the lost coin. We think like the prodigal son. I know this because of behavior and conversation. Behavior follows belief, and conversation reveals the heart. We act lost…even when found. We talk lost…even when found. I am guilty of lost behavior and lost conversation. I tend to succumb when feeling sad or overwhelmed, when I have no control or secure grip on my life or the circumstance at hand. So I get loose lost lips…when I should freely confess I am found.
Encouragement: Let’s focus on the wonderful way the Lord found us. Let’s flip the perspective switch and set our affections on things above (Colossians 3:2). Let’s think about being found — true, lovely, just, pure, honorable, praiseworthy, and excellent (Philippians 4:8).
Keep in mind, we grow in grace and in our knowledge of God (2 Peter 3:18). We GROW. A key component is growth. We learn and we grow. That said, I am growing to believe we can think like we are found. How? Through a living hope in the steadfast love of our Lord.
And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister.
~ Colossians 1:21-23, ESV [emphasis added]
Even when we cannot find our way as born again disciples, we can train our minds to think like the FOUND people we are. We can rely on the Lord’s steadfast love and place our hope in His love’s amazing ability to find us, to reveal the truth, to bring light, and renew life (Psalm 33:22, 147:11).
Where would my lost [insert condition or mindset here] be if it were FOUND? It would be in the hands of the Lord. We are found, and growing a found mindset means trusting that we are in the Lord’s hands, that He knows the way we take (Job 23:10). Thinking found means talking more like we dwell in light and the presence of any darkness is subordinate to the Light. Redemption is important in this discussion, but we will get to that.
Shaunta D. Scroggins is the lead contributor to The Bereans’ Commentary.
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