Here's my second round entry for Radio 2's Pause for Thought competition
Lost and Found
This week, universities up and down the country are holding Freshers’ Weeks. I’ve been at a couple this week and I’ve discovered two realities that are powerfully at play in Freshers’ Week. The first is that EVERYONE is utterly LOST. Folks are far from home, with a new environment, new people, new rules, new routines, and everyone’s LOST.
That’s one reality. The other is that everyone’s trying to FIND themselves. I still remember my mother’s parting words to me on the first day of uni. I think she’s now embarrassed by them, I’m certainly embarassed by them, she said with tears (and I quote) “Glen, I want you to FLY... Just... fly.” It’s the Bette Middler school of parenting I believe. But we know what she meant! In new environments we want to FIND the person that we want to be. We want to flourish and thrive and maybe even fly, I dunno. We certainly want to stop feeling lost.
That’s Freshers’ Week – but it’s also life. So often we feel lost and we want to find ourselves. But let me tell you – If you are LOST, the last thing you need to FIND is YOURSELF. Because you’re lost. And finding a lost person is NOT that much help. Lost people who find themSELVES find that they are Lost. Which is no great find. When you’re lost, you need to find HOME. And when you’re HOME then you can just BE yourself.
Jesus was always telling stories about how HE had come to find the lost. He’s like a searching shepherd finding lost sheep. He’s like a searching woman, finding a lost heirloom. He’s like a searching father, finding a lost son. Read more in Luke’s Gospel, chapter 15. Jesus comes from HOME – that ultimate Family Home of Father, Son and Holy Spirit – and He’s come to FIND the lost.
If you’re lost, you don’t need to find yourSELF. You need to find home. The good news Christians proclaim is that someone from Home has come to find you.