Seek the Lost

  • Jan. 30, 2012
  • #7761

Joni shares that seeking out the spiritually lost often means connecting with people with whom we find it difficult to connect.

Make Eye Contact! Reaching Out to Friends Who are Blind Video

Would you like to do a fascinating Bible study?

Then friend, I tell you what, study the social life of Jesus. That’s right. Hi, I'm Joni Eareckson Tada and a close study of the gospels will show that our Savior had one clear and concise mission: to seek out and save those who were lost. Luke chapter 19, verse 10 says, “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save that which was lost.” And you know what? In order to carry out His mission, Jesus connected with virtually every person put in His path, every kind of individual in every strata of society. He did not allow Himself to bypass anyone.

And here’s the thing: if we are serious about following in Christ's steps and carrying out His mission, we’ve got to do the same. It won't be easy, and we’ll be tempted to relate only to those with whom we identify, with whom we are comfortable. But if we want to follow Christ's lifestyle, then it will mean making inroads, or I should say, seeking out people we don't normally connect with. Remember how Luke 19 puts it: it uses those words “seek out” the lost. And that means going out of your way to connect with people you wouldn’t normally connect with.

I mean, look at the ones Jesus sought out. In Matthew 5:1-5, He befriends a guy with a serious mental illness, something no Jewish man would be caught dead doing. Then in Luke 5:27-30, Jesus started up a relationship with a tax collector, a conniver and a known cheater. In Luke 7:36-39, Jesus befriends a loose woman whose reputation was the talk of the town. And in John 4, He connects with a Samaritan: an outsider, a loner, an oddball. In Luke chapter 15, we see Jesus going to parties with bums and low-lifers. He goes out of His way to get to know people riddled with disease and wracked with mental illness.

Now there’s a lesson here for us. Really! Because when we say we want to follow Jesus in the hard places, this is one of those hard places: connecting with people we find it hard to connect with. Every day we bypass people who are considered outsiders and oddballs, loners and second-class citizens. Yet God has put these individuals around us in our neighborhoods, on our street corners, and in the mall parking lot. My co-worker, Cathy, has befriended a homeless woman who works part-time at the local Taco Bell. She's taking her to dinner this week. And you know what else? Cathy and her husband are helping this homeless woman find an affordable apartment nearby. Is that great or what?! Cathy is making inroads in our community "mission field" and she’s seeking out the lost. Can you and I do the same?

To give you a little help, I’d love for you to visit my radio page today because I’ve posted a video about reaching out to people who are blind. Blind people are those we might normally avoid, we might side-step. We think they’re hard to connect with because we don’t know what to do or say. But this short little video (and we’ve made it for children) is such an eye opener. So just go to my radio page at Joni and Friends and take a look. 

Finally, friend, may I encourage you not to overlook anyone today? Seek out people the way Jesus would. They are lost, they are lonely and they need a touch of grace and mercy in their lives. You were once lost, right? So do something a little out of the ordinary and connect with that hard person. May we always seek out people the way Jesus did. 

© Joni and Friends

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