Sometimes I wonder if I’m invisible. I know I’m not, but sometimes it seems like other people don’t even notice I’m here. Like when I’m walking down the street, and they come straight at me. My husband says I need to be big in crowds and stand my ground, but I prefer to jump out of the way and believe my cloaking device is activated.
One time at a conference, I joined a faculty member at a lunch table. She and another lady were chatting away, so I said a quiet hello and didn’t interrupt. And they never noticed me. They welcomed others, but somehow I slipped into a vortex where the faculty member couldn’t see me.
This happens when I’m in my car, too. I guess the invisibility powers extend to whatever I’m touching. Fortunately, my car horn works just fine and no one’s actually ever hit me.
There are benefits to not being noticed. I get to hear things and pick up all kinds of story ideas. I also don’t get blamed for stuff.
Mostly, though, feeling invisible just equals not mattering, not being important enough, talented enough, or smart enough, and that never feels good.
We long to be noticed. A few months ago, I heard my name called out, and for a brief second, it felt as if God himself had noticed me. And in that moment, I realized something. I wrote about it in my journal:
February 20, 2022
My life is not how I want it to be, and I feel so powerless to change it. It’s not big stuff. No crises. Just an inability to manage the hours I have with the things I say I want to do. It’s like I’m bound, stifled, confined in a room and watching instead of living. Except there are no cuffs on me. No one shushing me. The door is open. Yet I remain in the room, a prisoner of my inability to make myself do the things I care to do … The fight is real, and I’m not being a warrior right now …
(Later in the day)
Later and I am amazed by God’s incredible LOVE and reaching into my life. So I wrote all the stuff earlier and then went to worship, where the sermon reinforced several things that were part of my prayer time. One big point being I have all that I need. I am free from sin and slavery. I can live victorious. I am not defeated and destined to be at the mercy of my inability to be disciplined or stay awake. Jesus gives me victory. No fear. No worry. No giving up or throwing up my hands. He who has begun a good work in me will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus. I am not yet all that I shall be, but I press on to take hold of the prize. And God called me His today. Actually, it was Pastor Stan who called me out during a sermon illustration. ‘And there’s Mary Beth. She is mine.’
Seen By the Unseen.
God sees us and calls us his own. He called me out, literally. It was a simple illustration to make a sermon point, but in my heart, I knew it was God seeing me, assuring me he won’t let me go—that I matter to Him.
And I think he wants you to hear that too. He will not let you go. Your struggles differ from mine, but he knows. He calls you and loves you. No matter what holds you back or makes you feel invisible, He will help you, free you, guide you, and set you on your feet again. He is the God who sees you.
Mary Beth, I love this post. Just past the 52:00 mark of the service recording, there it was — you being publicly seen in the community of faith. God is so good! I’m sorry that conference faculty member treated you as invisible at the lunch table. Thank you for seeing me and not treating me as invisible at the lunch table on the last day of BRMCWC 2013. 🙂
Thank you, David! I hope we can catch up soon. I would love to hear how the conference went and how your new job is going! And no worries, on that faculty member. I think she was just deep in conversation, and I was super quiet. I’ll forever be grateful for friendships made around lunch tables, especially BRMCWC 2013!
I’ve felt this way before too. Thank you for the reminder we are never invisible to God.
WE are never invisible to God! Thank you for sharing!