I write tonight from the rare bliss of a hotel room all to myself, after a day of refreshment at The Gospel Coalition Women’s conference. I’ve heard Tim and Kathy Keller both teach on the book of Nehemiah; been led in worship beautifully by the Gettys; and have had the opportunity to connect and reconnect with friends old and new. Not to mention the afternoon enjoyment of this resort-like pool here. It’s a little taste of heaven in every way! A rare gift to have all of this at once: community of friends from various stages of life (I’ve literally run into friends from all major epochs so far: South Carolina days, Wheaton, Westminster Seminary/CCEF, World Harvest Mission – all in one place. Wow. Last time this happened it was our wedding … !)
We were in a grocery store, and I lost sight of her amidst the aisles of colorful food cartons and cans. I was terrified that I would never find her again. But after a brief few minutes, I found the mama I wanted as a five-year-old child.
A few years ago, it was reversed. And one of my blondies was there one moment and lost the next amidst the rows and rows and rows of clothes at Kohl’s. I looked everywhere for her and could not find her. I was feeling very panicked as I searched through two departments. I’ll never forget what it looked like to see her coming around the corner safely rescued by one of the staff.
Lost is terrifying. But in those few minutes before you realize you’re lost or that you’ve lost someone/something, you are blissfully unaware. If you’re the lost one, you may even think you’re free. Because to be lost can feel like freedom. Until you realize you’re unmoored from the source of life, of hope, of true safety and security.
Mine is a story of not knowing I’ve been lost. Of being the good girl who always was finding others, never realizing that I needed to be found. And mine is a story of being rescued and found over and over and over again. Not physically (though that has certainly happened too during various cross-cultural travels), but spiritually. Being found by the God who delights in me and who always knows where and when and how to find me. Like how He is finding me here, in a solitary hotel room amidst 4000 women.
Show me where I’ve been lost, God, and lead me back home … through Your Word and Your people. Amen.