I was in the movie theater the other day, watching Lion. There is a scene in the movie where a man who got lost from his family as a child of five. He ends up in an orphanage where the children are locked in. He is probably sold although it doesn’t say it, to a family in Australia. So he is now 26, and he is away at school where he meets people who are India. At a dinner party where they are talking about growing up India. He says he grew up Australian. But this conversation around the table makes him remember. He starts think about his mother and brother. The memories of his young life come back. One of them suggested have you heard about this new thing Google Earth. Saroo can’t let the memories go and begins the search. This scene has these powerful words where his girlfriend goes to find him and he is hunched over in pain. And he says, “I am lost.”
I was struck by those words. I am lost. He literally was lost to his family. But how many of us and those around us are lost. Whether we have a family member who is lost in a world of addiction and the ripples this created in all the people around them. We may have a friend who has lost their purpose when the job they have always done has disappeared. We may know a neighbor who is struggle with trying to raise their grandkids while taking care of their parents as their dreams for a peaceful and fun retirement evaporate. We have a friend who don’t know how they will make it through this illness when their health insurance leaves them with the 20% bill that means they may lose their house and they don’t what to do. We may have a child, a grandchild who haven’t found their purpose, dream, bliss, who seem to be losing that spark we loved in them as a child. I am lost. We feel like the country we love, the people we thought we knew, have created a world that seems straight out of a dystopian novel.
The lost matter to God.
And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.’ Luke 15.6
“When she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin that I had lost.’ Luke 15.9
“But we had to celebrate and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead and has come to life; he was lost and has been found.’” Luke 15.32
“For the Son of Man came to seek out and to save the lost.” Luke 19.10
“I will seek the lost, and I will bring back the strayed, and I will bind up the injured, and I will strengthen the weak, but the fat and the strong I will destroy. I will feed them with justice. Ezekiel 34.16
We are invited to seek out, to search high and low for those who are lost. We are called to find the lost, to bring back the strayed, strengthen the weak, bind up the wounded. Saroo gets lost in the search for his birth family. He loses his job, his degree, his girlfriend, and pushes his family away. He looks ragged and haggard. His search seems hopeless. Yet in that moment he goes outside his search parameters and finds the landscape he remembers and with Google Earth is able to find his village. The lost is found.