Summary: Are you easily distracted? Do you get a sense that distraction is a big part of our lives whether we know it or not, and whether we want it to be or not? And, what’s wrong with being distracted?
“Distracted from distraction by distraction / Filled with fancies and empty of meaning / Tumid apathy with no concentration . . .” - T.S. Eliot’s Four Quartets
Are you easily distracted? Do you get a sense that distraction is a big part of our lives whether we know it or not, and whether we want it to be or not? And, what’s wrong with being distracted? Well, in the above lines from T.S. Eliot’s Four Quartets we get a sense of the sickness of which “distracted” is merely the symptom.
Distracted: Having the attention diverted. Render incapable of behaving in a normal manner.
We are at liberty to think our own thoughts, but our independent ideas, such as they may be, must live with thousands of ideas and notions inculcated by influential teachers or floated by "idea men," advertisers, communications people, columnists, anchormen, et cetera. We are constantly distracted by ideas and thoughts that lead us to negative distractions.
Today I want to talk about a positive distraction. Let me start by reading words of Jesus when he was talking about his mission
Luke 19:10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save that which was lost.
A. The Lost
In the latest global statistics they say that the population of Earth is now 7 billion people. About 2 billion of these people claim to be Christian. Not everyone that claims to be a Christian is truly a Christian. Maybe there is about 1 billion that are true followers (I don't know)
However let's take the statistics as true and there are 5 billion that are not followers of Christ. They are far from God and they are going to spend an eternity without God. If you were about to line them one by one that line would be all the way across the Atlantic Ocean to Europe, to China and it would circle the entire globe 34 times. This is how many lost people there are in the World this time.
What do you thing God things about that? As he looks down to the World he created he's got 2 billion kids that are found and are OK but there are 5 billion that are lost. Jesus came to seek and save that was wish was lost.
Seek and save means that we need to have a routine, something in our life that will drive us to direct our attention to those lost people.
Every single person is important to God!
Have you ever lost something of value?
If you look in the place where your keys are supposed to be and they are not there is because they are lost. People are lost because they are not in their right place in their relationship with God. Have you ever panicked over lost keys and someone helps you to find them. Have you ever lost your car?
When you loose something of value creates a distraction because you just focus in finding that thing that you've lost. If you ever lost a child you will never forget the panic and the stress of trying to find a son or a daughter that was lost. It's not that you are searching for a kid that is lost and stop and say "wait a minute I still have two other kids...I may just take care of the ones I still have." You don't do that because when you care for the lost you focused in finding your son. If you have friends you expect them to help you to find your kid.
The lost will always distract us from the ones that are already found.
Jesus is saying, "My mission is to seek and to save the lost". If you want God's attention you need to plug into this mission and be dedicated and focused to Jesus.
B. How to seek the lost
If we are on the same mission as Jesus we will be distracted from the saved and focus our attention to seek and save those that are lost. There is a seeking part that gets your attention diverted to those children that are far from Him and need to come back home.
Jesus illustrates this in a wonderful way in Luke chapter 15. He gave one parable with 3 aspects.
1. The lost sheep
2. The lost coin
3. The lost son
1. The Lost Sheep
A good shepherd even if he has 99 sheep that are found will go on a journey to seek and find that was lost. He is distracted because he knows the 99 are OK. Some people interpret this as having their pastor calling them if they don't come to Church but the true meaning of this Scripture is that we need to get distracted from the saved in order to focus our attention in finding the lost. There are still 5 billion people that are lost and we need to find them.