As much as I’m thrilled to have life getting back to normal, it’s been a little jarring to re-enter the world after over a year of hunkering down and staying away from others. I feel strange and a little naked without my ever-present mask. I feel exposed and vulnerable as I rejoin crowds of people. And heaven forbid if I have to cough in public!
It seems like I’ve gotten so used to being alone that when I am with others, I struggle to see how I fit back in. I know it’s weird, but spending so much time alone makes me think the world has continued on without me and I’m kind of left in the dust.
When I feel invisible, no longer noticed or necessary or useful, I go straight to my Bible. It’s the one constant and stable source of hope and encouragement that God has provided for all of us to get through life…the good, bad, the centered and the lost feelings that make up our human experience.
I don’t know if anyone out there can relate. As happy as I am that God created me to be unique, I’d hope that some of you have had at least one or two of these same feelings. If so, I want to share a word from God that will take away any doubt that you and I are loved beyond words or measure and we are anything but invisible.
O Lord, You have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away. You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do. You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord. You go before me and follow me. You place your hand of blessing on my head. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to understand!
I can never escape from Your Spirit! I can never get away from Your presence! If I go up to heaven, You are there; if I go down to the grave, You are there. If I ride the wings of the morning, if I dwell by the farthest oceans, even there Your hand will guide me, and Your strength will support me. I could ask the darkness to hide me and the light around me to become night—but even in darkness I cannot hide from You. To You the night shines as bright as day. Darkness and light are the same to You.
You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in Your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.
How precious are Your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, You are still with me!
O God, if only You would destroy the wicked! Get out of my life, you murderers! They blaspheme You; Your enemies misuse your name. O Lord, shouldn’t I hate those who hate You? Shouldn’t I despise those who oppose You? Yes, I hate them with total hatred, for Your enemies are my enemies.
Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends You, and lead me along the path of everlasting life. – Psalm 139
When I read Psalm 139, I am reminded that God made me exactly as I am. He knew everything about me before I was born and He still knows all my thoughts, fears and anxieties. He loves me anyway. And you know what that means, right? It means that He knew everything about you before you were born and He still knows all your thoughts, fears and anxieties. And He loves you anyway! How awesome and comforting and too wonderful to imagine is that?
Holy Father, thank you for the encouragement You provide as I read Your word. Thank you that no matter what I may be feeling, You “go before me and follow me and place Your hand of blessing on my head!” Fill me with Your love today and give my opportunities to share that love with others. Amen.