The Best Part of Being Lost
My wife and I once took a trip to Flagstaff, AZ.
The city is beautiful. Driving from Phoenix, the landscape transforms from dessert to mountains, all in a span of 2 hours.
The city sits next to a mountain, and we love to hike. Once we learned about the trails, we decided to explore this incredible heap of earth.
The more we hiked, the less clear the trails became. The markings disappeared. Everything began to look the same.
We were lost.
Once we realized it, we quickly became frightened. We imagined the local new stations back home summarizing our untimely deaths.
“A Louisville couple on a trip to Arizona was found dead on the side of a mountain in Flagstaff. Officials report that their cold, lifeless bodies were found 200 yards away from a subdivision. Apparently they were not smart enough to navigate their way back to civilization and save their own lives. Please kids, be smart. Go to school.”
It is difficult to describe what we felt when we had no idea where we were or how to get back home.
- There was urgency, knowing that we had to find our way before it became dark.
- There was fear. We imagined a thousand different horrible scenarios. Some involved us eating strange thing, and some involved strange things eating us.
- There was confusion. We lost all sense of direction. We had no idea which way to go or what step to take next. We took steps, but without knowing if it helped or if we were making things worse. Everything looked the same.
- There was hopelessness. There was nothing we could do to make anything better. There was no amount of trying or thinking or doing that would improve our lostness.
Obviously things worked out. We eventually found our way.
But I will never forget that feeling of being completely lost.
The world makes me feel lost.
I stare at everything around me and these same fears fill my soul.
The fear, the confusion, the hopelessness, all pour in around me, threatening to drown me, like a car filling with water after you accidentally drive into a lake.
I feel trapped. I desperately try to break open the windows, but nothing works. The water pours in and I feel that all I can do is watch and wait.
Wait for the end to come.
But it didn’t. Instead I was rescued and I learned something about being lost.
The best part of being lost is being found.
I was found by grace.
Grace is the story where God reaches down and rescues me from my brokenness.
Where God rescues me from myself.
And he gives us freedom and life.
Grace is more than just a map to help me find my way in a wilderness. It is a rescue operation.
Unlike my hike into a rural mountain, it wasn’t so easy to find my way back. In fact, I never could.
Instead, God rescued me.
He sent a squadron of police cars and state troopers with really smart dogs and rescue helicopters to go and find me. I was so lost, that it cost a great deal to bring me back.
And when they found me, there in my hopelessness, drowning in my fear, Grace scooped down and lifted me out of it, and we flew off to safety.
God brought me back home where I belong.
Do I add that much value to the world, or to heaven, that such an expensive rescue operation is cost effective?Probably not.
But it depends on whom you ask. If you ask my adoptive father, the guy funding the entire operation, it was worth every bit.
That cost was his son, Jesus.
My worth has nothing to do with me, but everything to do with how much he loves me.
Have you experienced God’s grace? Tell us in the comments.
Or download my eBook Grace Is.