Have you ever been completely lost? I don’t mean just lost as in you don’t have the right driving directions to get to a new restaurant. I mean really lost––as in you’re alone in a foreign or isolated place and you have no way of getting out on your own. It’s scary! And we don’t have to be on a deserted island like the TV Show LOST to be lost. Even in a sea of people we can be lost if we don’t know anyone or we can’t speak the language.
While in northern Israel we went to Mensa Christi on the Sea of Galilee. This is the area where Peter went after the crucifixion of Christ. After he had denied Jesus three times and then watched as Christ was beaten and killed. Peter knew Christ had risen. He knew Christ was indeed the promised Messiah. But Peter also knew what he had done. On the night Jesus was betrayed, Peter he had promised to stand by Jesus until the end. And several hours later he ran away in fear.
He was a coward. He was a failure. He was useless.
He was lost. His life was in ruin. His purpose in life was gone now that he wasn’t worthy of being by Jesus’ side. Have you ever felt this way? I have.
So what did Peter do? He went back to what he knew. He returned to his hometown to try to work as a fisherman. But he couldn’t even do that right. He wasn’t catching any fish.
And then Jesus came looking for him.
Jesus met Peter on the shores of Mensa Christi. The Lord filled his nets with fish and then fed him breakfast. Jesus restored Peter financially. He restored Peter physically. And then Jesus restored Peter spiritually and emotionally. How? By assuring him of the forgiveness poured out for each of us when Jesus died on the cross. By calling him to a life of purpose in service to Christ.
Peter was never the same.
In one day Peter went from being a downcast and depressed fisherman to being one of the strongest defenders of faith in Christ. All because Jesus came looking for him. Peter was willing to accept God’s forgiveness and believe that Jesus could use his broken life for God’s glory. And God did.
God came looking for someone else we know. Ever hear of Adam and Eve? After they ate the apple on that dark day, they hid in the garden because they were afraid. They knew they had made a big mistake. But instead of coming to God to ask forgiveness, they ran away.
So God came looking for Adam.
“The LORD God called to the man, ‘Where are you?’” (Genesis 3:9) Isn’t that odd? He’s God. Wouldn’t He know where Adam was? Yes. He did. But He wanted to show Adam how important he was to God. He wanted to give Adam the opportunity to confess what he had done and receive forgiveness and restoration.
Make no mistake, our bad decisions may have consequences we will live with for the rest of our life. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t be forgiven. That doesn’t mean we have to live an isolated and lost life without God. And that doesn’t mean we can’t be used as God’s light in our dark places when we allow Him to work in us and through us to transform our life.
Do you feel lost? Do you wonder about your purpose in life? Do you doubt if God can really use someone like you? Or why He would want to? Are you hiding from God and others?
Here’s truth: God already knows where you are.
God also understands our human need to feel wanted, to feel needed, to feel loved and pursued. To feel forgiven. Especially when we’ve made a big mistake.
God wants us to come to Him and be restored to new life. No matter where we’ve been. No matter what we’ve done. He is always faithful. And that will never change.
God is looking for you. Right now.
“If we are unfaithful, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny who He is.” 2 Timothy 2:13 (NLT)
May I pray?
Jesus, thank You that You are looking for us. Thank You that You know where we are. And thank You that You will never change who You are: Faithful. Forgive us for hiding from You. Please give us the courage today to stand up and say, “Lord, here I am.” May we confess our fears and failures to You so we can be restored to a love relationship with You. Help us to accept Your forgiveness and move forward in new life. May we use the testimony of our brokenness to encourage others in their walk with You. Amen.
Q4U: When was a situation in which you felt completely lost?