Encouragement for anyone who ever feels overlooked
I wrote these words on a Sunday afternoon almost six years ago. When I read this again recently, I had to share it again.
Today (Sunday) had a rocky start, but it ended up transforming my worldview just when I needed it most. God likes to do that. And He doesn’t disappoint.
I felt like I wrangled greased pigs to get us out the door and to church mostly on time. I do not like to be late, but we almost were. My husband was at home sick. My son was going back to the nursery for the first time in months. And this was the first time I was taking both kids to church on my own.
Finding God through chaos
As I drove, I explained to my daughter we were later than usual and she needed to cooperate and not dilly dally on the way in. She understood. Then I asked her if she would pray with me that her brother would not cry in the nursery. I drove and prayed out loud. She added her own prayer. We whizzed into the parking lot and were off.
As a complete answer to prayer, my son didn’t even whimper when I handed him over to the nursery worker. He just watched me go and was completely fine. I slid into a back pew feeling a bit shell-shocked. How had that just happened? I remembered our prayer from 10 minutes earlier and realized that God had answered my prayer.
Today was one of those days when my mama heart was just fragile and achy for a wide array of reasons. I couldn’t exactly put a finger on what was off and making me sad, but something was. I slowly began to revel in the fact that God had heard me and answered my prayer as we began singing worship songs. And almost as surely as if He’d been sitting in the pew beside me, God spoke to me.
“You have not been forgotten.”
“You have not been forgotten.”
The forgotten mama
My heart was filled. Tears sprung to my eyes. Forgotten. I had a name for what I’d been feeling the last couple of weeks. Forgotten. I am in a season where my life revolves around other people pretty much all of the time.
While eating my breakfast, I thought about how 90% of the time, I was fine that life wasn’t about me. But 10% of the time, it stung. I didn’t quite know how to best manage that. Sometimes I wanted to do something for me. I wanted it to be about me sometimes. And sometimes I wanted to feel seen for who I was and heard for what was in my heart.
When we become moms, we disappear a bit. I’ve written about this many times. We disappear as our lives become so consumed with this small person (or people) who needs us. Heck, even just interacting with other people showcases that fact.
Have you walked into a room with a baby in your arms and had someone stop and sincerely ask you how you’re doing? Neither have I. The baby gets the attention. And that’s OK.
But, over time, we mamas really can feel a bit forgotten, whether we recognize it or not. Add in that we forget about ourselves (when was the last time I got my hair cut or decided what I wanted to eat simply because it sounded good to ME?), and we are left a bit adrift.
However, I have good news. I have good news that just arrived as a fresh balm to my aching heart this morning: You are not forgotten, mama. I am not forgotten. No matter how little the rest of the world sees of us, no matter how little we see of ourselves, God sees us. He sees us. HE sees US! We have not been forgotten.
And that includes prayers we’ve been praying for years and waiting for answers to. That includes the desires of our hearts that sometimes seem so far from obtainable we cry in despair. It also includes the pieces of ourselves we chip away in order to take care of our families. And it includes all the sacrifices we make. It also includes the hurts He continues to let us endure to remind us how much we need Him.
We’re not flailing around down here without Someone noticing. He notices. He hasn’t forgotten us. He loves us. He sees us. He doesn’t overlook us. We are the desire of God’s heart even more than our children are the desire of our hearts. He has not forgotten you, mama. He loves you.
Dwell on that today. Remember that today as you tend to everyone else except yourself. Remember that today when you feel like no one is listening to your heart, even if that’s only because you’re too tired to express your heart to someone who cares. Remember that today when you start to feel like nothing more than a cook, maid and bottom-wiper. Remember that God sees you. God loves you. God encourages you. And He has not forgotten you. He wants to meet you where you are.
You are not forgotten!