“But Zion said, ‘The Lord has forsaken me, and my Lord has forgotten me.’ ‘Never! Can a woman forget her nursing child, and not have compassion on the son of her womb? Surely they may forget, yet I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands; Your walls are continually before Me.’” -Isaiah 49:14-16
Recently I have been feeling forgotten. Forgotten by friends, family, coworkers. Even God. There are days where I literally feel invisible. I feel like a toddler who only knows how to get attention by acting out. Negative attention is the only thing I seem to be capable of bringing to myself these days and I’m not quite sure why.
I keep having these situations happen where discussions and decisions are taking place around me, but no one remembers to include me in them. Every single day this week I was left out of something I thought I was going to be included in. I can’t help wondering if there will ever be someone in my life who will think to ask me what I want or what my thoughts are. People don’t consult me for their plans (and they shouldn’t need to), but will I ever factor into someone else’s plan?
It’s happened so many times over the last few weeks that I’m seriously questioning my own value. Why do people keep forgetting me? Will I ever matter to anyone? People tell me I matter to them, but if that is true, why am I so easily forgotten? Sometimes they are kind enough to apologize and attempt to fix it after the fact, but they don’t realize it isn’t the actual plan that upsets me; it’s that I was forgotten. Left out. Invisible. Again. You can include me in the plan afterwards, but you can’t fix the fact that I wasn’t important enough to even be considered. And most of the time I know it wasn’t intentional so I can’t even be upset with them over it. That’s almost worse. If they did it on purpose that would mean they at least thought of me, but I’m not even a blip on their radar. No one ever makes plans with me, they make plans for me, or rather they make plans for themselves and if I want to barge in maybe I can crash their plans, but I have to force myself in the midst of them or I am left out. I don’t want to be where I’m not wanted so most of the time that means not participating. Even at work. Even in my own family. Even at church. I’m just so incredibly invisible.
It shouldn’t bother me so much. Why do I need to be recognized or included? I don’t. I have all that I need in Him. I’m trying to hold on to this: the Lord has not forgotten me. Sometimes I feel like He has, but that is not Truth. The Bible tells me that He will never leave me or forsake me. He knows the number of hairs on my head. He has called me by name. He has plans to prosper me. He sees every tear. He knows every fear. He provides for every need. He is with me.
“A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” -John 13:34-35
Tonight I nearly incited a riot on Facebook. I put up a status basically stating that I hate the word till (preferring the word until). I thought it was written in such a way that people could tell I was joking around and not that I was harboring actual hateful feelings. I was talking about a word after all. A rather innocuous 14th century word. The status created a firestorm of controversy. The way that one of my friends responded you would think I wrote that I hate a member of her family or something. She began talking about the power of the tongue and blessing and cursing and sent me a private message saying that more people would be in the church if I watched my mouth more. I was flabbergasted. It was a joke! About a word! Really, it was just me expressing a pet-peeve of mine, but I miscalculated how it would be received.
Several friends came to my defense since they recognized the intent of my post. Unfortunately, this resulted in my Christian friends arguing back and forth on my status. This made me incredibly sad. All I could think about is all my non-Christian friends who were reading it. I couldn’t help but think that seeing Christians lashing out at each other over something so petty would be more likely to keep them out of church than the fact that I used the word hate in my status. Perhaps I shouldn’t have used that word; it is certainly a learning experience for me; but oh, how I wish we Christians could learn to disagree in love. I implore all my brothers and sisters to please please consider how people in the world perceive us when we attack each other like this. Even in cases where one of us might be theologically or doctrinally wrong, we need to be gentle and conscientious when discussing these matters in front of the lost.
In the end I opted to post the song below as a gentle reminder. It seems to have worked as the woman who messaged me then apologized. I wrote back stating there were no hard feelings and I would be more careful about how I worded things in the future. So far the riot appears to have been quelled. I am disturbed that a religiously and politically neutral post could so quickly spiral out of control, but that is the world we live in these days. I take comfort that there was peaceful resolution. As Christians I would like to encourage us all to strive to avoid offense, turn the other cheek, and love each other better.
Working as night float, our job is literally to keep everyone alive through the night. From the wee babies to the 90 year old grandparents, there are two of us taking the calls for everyone in our care in the hospital. Although not every patient in the hospital is ours, we deal with a range of complaints from “my patient is having watery diarrhea” to “this baby is here for withdrawl since mom was taking heroin while she was pregnant.”
Throughout all of this I know one thing is true: Jesus is our healer. From what ails the body to what binds the soul, He is the one who can bring the ultimate healing. I cannot take away the diabetes or cancer. I cannot mend the the past pain of being raped years ago as a child. But I know a God, and His name is Jesus Christ and He died for our sins because He loved us that much. By His stripes- the 40 stripes inflicted by the ripping flogs- we are healed.
Dear reader- let it sink in today that no matter what hurt or pain has come your way in this world- Jesus not only CAN take it away, He WILL take it away if you just ask! Know that sometimes with things like diabetes, He may not automatically heal you. You might have to learn to eat better and work out more (I myself am a diabetic and threw my meds away once believing He healed me since I knew He could). But this journey of learning to balance food, exercise, and a healthy life because of the diabetes is one that I wouldn’t trade for the world. We can live a better and full life- even if that means living with a daily disease. We can have painful events in our past that God can use to touch others and give hope to the hopeless. Let Him flood your heart and soul with His love right now and find that He is our healer!
No guilt in life, no fear in death. This is the power of Christ in me. From life’s first cry to final breath Jesus commands my destiny. No power of hell, no scheme of man Can ever pluck me from His hand. ’til He returns or calls me home Here in the power of Christ I’ll stand .
Thank you, Jesus for this life you have given me! Thank You for showing me that it is all through You, in You alone! I love You, Lord.
I’ve been asked to play drums at my new church twice already and then tonight I was asked to do a special next Saturday. I can’t help but feel that God is making my life okay. All day I was suffering from back pain and although not 100% better yet, some within says that God will make sure I have the strength to make it through my first day of work on Monday as a doctor. I know that His presence, which is heaven to me, will be with me all day. I know assuredly that He will walk with me through what would seem like a terrifying day of realizing that lives are truly in my hands and I’m only human. This I know that- He will never leave me and that I can do all things through Him!
So Lord, Your presence is heaven to me- assurance, security, hope, and strength. I praise You God! I thank You Jesus!!!!!!
I haven’t been doing so well lately. Something in me is restless. I found myself easily angered by stupid things. I found myself frustrated beyond belief unnecessarily. I found myself recently failing a trial. Today while driving home, I just poured my heart out. Sobbing to the One who can comfort me, I told Him just how much I was sorry for failing once again. I told Him how much I just wanted to be free of the things that seem to trip me up. I was torn up and broken before Him. In that time though, of truly allowing my heart to be open before Him, I found Him just going in and dumping out all the muck. He dug in, taking out the things that I have no power to take out on my own. As He did His work, I felt His incredible sorrow that I wrote about ME feeling for a friend of mine (in the post God’s Sorrow)… but His sorrow was just as deep and directed AT ME. Then… as I poured more of myself out, I felt Him opening up my heart and letting His light shine. To bring back life and hope. So that I could feel His forgiveness. To see His divine purpose. To realize that He had more things to burn away from my soul, but that everything is allowed in an effort so that I can be His light. So that I will be ready for the ministry He has in store for me.
So reader, if you feel led to, join me in this prayer:
I’m desperate for You. I’m longing for You. Come like a flood, purge me of myself, and saturate me now with You. You’re all I want. Clean out everything within me, burn out the bad in me, and make me whole and new in You. As my dad once prayed for me, give me a new bottle… all the different kinds of bottles that hold all the different kinds of promises- of family, of jobs, of friends, of ministry… give us all new bottles- ones filled with hope and YOUR blessings. Things that seem dead and stale in our lives and hearts, purge them, and replace them with YOU. Be everything in our lives. Fill every last crevice that was cleaned out as You purged us. Fill it with Your love, Your purpose, Your plan. Use us to share Your good news! You are alive! You want to give us good lives! Praise You Jesus! Praise You God!
P.S. Below I’ve put a video up of a song I recently put on facebook. This song is still resonating in my heart today, even stronger actually.
So I know we’ve been doing a lot of song of the days lately… but I love this song! It’s even part of my jogging Mp3 mix track I made myself (28 mins of continuous christian music in one mp3 with even parts where I tell myself to start running or that I can walk LOL!). There are days when we wake up singing this with a happy heart… and there are times when we sing this to remind ourselves that in the end, we win. But may this song be with you today dear readers in which ever kind of situation you are in right now. Know that either you are living in victory and feeling it, or you are living in victory with a sense of faith- knowing that since God grants us the power to overcome evil and to be victorious, it is definitely already happening… just a little more in your future
You are victorious in Him who commands the angelic hosts!
You are victorious in Jesus name for “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)
You are able to even move mountains!!!
Live your victory dear readers. Praise Him NOW, even if you aren’t living IN your victory at this very moment… for it will come! He will come! Our wonderful, mighty King, the Lord of Hosts, Jesus Christ helps us live “the best life, liv[e] the blessed life”
With my medical school days wrapping up soon and all the changes that come along with that, I have noted a slight shift. There are so MANY possible distractions. There are potential unnecessary arguments, potential unneeded activities, and more to take me away from the main thing- Jesus. As this song says, Jesus be the center of it all. May my day revolve around Him and pleasing Him. I wouldn’t be surprised if this isn’t the first time I’ve posted this song, but we can never truly remind ourselves about this point too much. Everything is NOTHING without Him.
So Jesus, rule in my life. Rule in my conversations. Rule in my every day living. Be my center. Be my rock that everything is built on. Let my life reflect You, Jesus.
Last night I had an interesting conversation with a recent acquaintance of mine. He wanted to know my thoughts on homosexuality. It was pretty clear he went in with the idea that if I said it was wrong that he would never speak to me again. I prayed for wisdom on what words to say- not because I so deeply cared if he left my life (he really isn’t any part of my life)- but because all times can be a moment to bring people closer to understanding principles of God. I honestly don’t want to delve into my stance because this topic is controversial and I like keeping my posts about my personal main focus in life: showing God’s love.
I wrote a bit about this before in my post “The God of Love”. I think the amazing part of everything is that by the end of the conversation I stood by the Bible but I also opened his eyes to the fact that just because one may not agree with someone else, it doesn’t mean they have to hate them nor shun them. This Jesus, He is all about bringing people together and having peace be in the midst. We don’t have to fight or hurt others. Just show them Jesus. Show them love and God will do the rest and reveal as He wills. Let your light be so bright- the light of His love- that it’s evident who you are for.
Yesterday I was incredibly sick with what I’m guessing was a 24 hour bug. Throwing up every hour on the half hour for what felt like an eternity and then when that stopped I had full on body aches and a high fever. Even running my hands through my hair hurt on a level like I don’t ever remember it hurting. Through it all though, something in my heart still gave praise to God. There were short windows where I would feel well, about 30-45 mins each and during one of those windows I played a song that I newly learned. Part of the lyrics say “in my weakness you are merciful” and I started to cry as I sang them out loud.
It is so true. In our moments of weakness, physical or spiritual, God is still merciful, He is still good. I was blessed beyond measure to have it happen while I was home visiting family so that my mom could take care of me. Just a few years shy of thirty and I was lucky enough to still have my mom nurse me back to health. She quickly went out to get ingredients for chicken soup, sugar free jello (I’m diabetic), low carb Gatorade, and saltine crackers. At one point when my fever was raging high and I could barely move from pain, she actually spoon fed me some jello and gave me Gatorade through a straw because I hadn’t had anything for a bit.
God gives us what we need when we need it! Even more, the doctor I’m working with this month told me I could take today and tomorrow off to get better and come back on Weds. What blessings! What mercy! God, You truly outdo what I am worthy of! Thank You Jesus!!
Thank You Jesus that in my weakness, You truly are merciful! Thank You Jesus that in all times, You are good! Thank You Jesus that there is none like You and You truly do watch over us Praise You Jesus! Praise You God for Your little miracles