The Power of Being Found

Kyle Bartholic   -  

On a recent camping trip, one of our daughters realized that she had lost an earring. Which is not the end of the world, and the earing she lost was not anything of value. But, here’s the kicker, this revelation came in the middle of the night, she had both earrings in when she went to bed, and we were sleeping on air mattresses. All I could think about was how that lost earring was going to end up poking a hole in her mattress, and I would be on the hard ground because she would get my air mattress. Oh, and then there is the dilemma of searching for it. Her brother and sister were soundly asleep on either side of her. A lost earing… something so small created such a big dilemma.

Laying in my sleeping bag, I contemplated the options.

  • Don’t look for it… risk a hole in the mattress.
  • Look for it… risk waking everyone up.

And then she proclaimed, I found it!

I feel a little silly expressing to you the amount of joy that I had at that moment. There was relief that everyone would stay asleep and that no air mattresses would be harmed that night. And, selfishly, I would be able to sleep comfortably for the rest of the night.


Have you ever felt sincere joy in finding what was lost?


Jesus taps into that feeling in several parables about lost things. A lost coin, a lost sheep, and lost sons are all images Jesus uses to express the joy that the Father has in finding what was lost. Jesus himself will even describe his mission in terms of seeking what was lost (Luke 19:10).

The simple truth is that God loves and takes great joy in finding what was lost, and what was lost was you and me.

We intuitively and naturally understand the power of being found. I think that is why Jesus leaned into it in several parables. The truth we should not miss in all of this is that, while we were lost, we had no power or awareness to seek out our salvation. No, instead, God, out of his lavish love and radical generosity, sought us out so that we could be found by him. And, for no other reason than he loves us and desires our good.

There is something powerful in being found by that God.


11 “For thus says the Lord GOD: Behold, I, I myself will search for my sheep and will seek them out. 12 As a shepherd seeks out his flock when he is among his sheep that have been scattered, so will I seek out my sheep, and I will rescue them from all places where they have been scattered on a day of clouds and thick darkness. 13 And I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them into their own land. And I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, by the ravines, and in all the inhabited places of the country. 14 I will feed them with good pasture, and on the mountain heights of Israel shall be their grazing land. There they shall lie down in good grazing land, and on rich pasture they shall feed on the mountains of Israel. 15 I myself will be the shepherd of my sheep, and I myself will make them lie down, declares the Lord GOD. 16 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, and the fat and the strong I will destroy. I will feed them in justice.

(Ezekiel 34:11-16)