Have you ever been there? Getting lost or making wrong decisions, because the wrong word is stuck in your head. When I used to make flower deliveries to our local funeral homes, on a few occasions I found myself heading to the wrong funeral home. Why? I used to go to the two local funeral homes so much that I didn't put much thought into it, and so on a few occasions I started off to the wrong one. Getting lost can occur because the wrong word or image is stuck in our head.
I have listened to many people talk about their spiritual lives. They have this sense of lostness that comes from having their mind frozen on the wrong thought. Some people keep thinking they are "good." Since they perceive themselves as good, who needs God? Others describe their spiritual life based on what they have done and not what Jesus has done. In essence, there is no switch. They are still stuck on "Me." They still wander around lost.
As we were driving home, I made the next mistake that created our "lostness." I missed a sign, if there was one. So, instead of bypassing downtown Washington D.C., we toured it. After making the mistake, we struggled because we did not see street signs, so we could identify where we were on a map. Then, once we seemed to have a plan, we failed because of one way streets not marked on the map. Once we asked a gas station attendant, he seemed to get us going the right direction, yet the two streets he told us to go didn't connect, or at least we couldn't make the connection. I was given a GPS from the team member following me, but it lost power in my vehicle. Eventually, we gave it back to her and followed her out of Washington D.C. and back home.
Why did we get lost? We missed a sign, or the road was not well marked. Either way, missing or overlooking signs leads to getting lost. One needs to pay attention. The reason we got back on the right track was because one person followed all the advice of the GPS. They paid close attention. (Ironically, the person who got lost in the first situation was the person who got us found, led us out of Washington D.C., in the second situation.)
Have you ever missed signs and got lost? One time a friend and I was traveling to a comedian concert in Los Angeles. We were driving north on some freeway, but we could never find the sign to our ramp. When we realized we must have missed the ramp and were late, we made a call to the people we were going to meet, and found out the concert was cancelled. On the way home, heading south, we saw signs to place we were to go. Were the signs only going south and not going north? A few days later we were heading the same direction, and I counted five signs we missed.
We often struggle in our lives because we miss the signs or don't follow the instructions. The Bible reveals our creator and it is like an instruction manual for an "abundant" life, or as Jesus called it, "life to the full." However, we don't want to accept our creator nor the instructions that reveal how he made us to live life to the optimum. Often, we choose to intentionally reject those instructions. Other times, we forget or unintentionally miss the instructions. Either way, to be found we need to seek our creator and his manual, and as we do, we will drive out of the state of "lostness" into the state of "found."