I haven’t been lost very often in my life but there are a few times that I have got turned around and didn’t know how to get back home. For many years my family especially the guys have had a tradition of deer hunting, I have been hunting in the same woods since I was 12 years old and it’s hard to get lost there, I know every hill and tree in the area. Once I was there for a hike in August when all the leaves where still on the trees and it didn’t take very long and I didn’t know where I was, all my reference points were covered by the vegetation that was never there in November. Eventually I was able to identify some reference points and found my way out.
Most of us have taken the wrong exit on the expressway while traveling and had to get back on track, or even had to stop and ask directions. Being lost in most of America, has an easy and quick solution so your back on your way in no time. But being lost in a wilderness, or in a foreign land without the proper language skills can be devastating and even deadly, that is what I call “Deep Lostness,” lost without hope or help.
Likewise being spiritually lost (without saving faith in Jesus Christ) has some similarities that parallel lostness in the natural sense. In the USA where I have lived most of my life there are Christian ministries reaching out everywhere, you can hear the message of Jesus’ Love and salvation on the street, at work, TV, radio, so much that I have heard it said; “ In America we have freedom of religion, not freedom from religion.”
In West Africa where we minister, and in many parts of the world, where there are unreached groups of people (Tribes) this is not the case. In Sierra Leone there are about 20 native African Tribal groups most with different languages, 12 of these have no church and are unreached with Christ’s gospel. That means they will not meet a Christian believer who can tell them of saving faith in Jesus, or hear God’s good news on TV or radio, because they have no TV or radio. None of their neighbors will invite them to church because there is no church with their people, or in their language; they are lost without hope and without help. Jesus commanded his followers to tell his story to everyone, everywhere, and at any cost. Yes it will cost the church something to reach lost people for Jesus Christ, so the question is what are you willing to spend; your money, your time, your life? Jesus ministry proves every lost person is of infinite value to God, and no one is to be excluded from the opportunity to hear the good news about Jesus.
Today if we will reach the lost, every Christian needs to take up their cross and follow Jesus, telling his story, even if it costs everything; even if it leads them to the ends of the earth, and even if it leads them to the end of their life.