This past Sunday we visited a church and so many talked to both of us - they spoke to my son and get this - they even touched him. Unless you've been there you won't understand that. It can start to seem like we have leprosy or the plague. I actually fought back tears as I saw person after person touch his shoulder and speak directly to him even though he didn't seem to care. (I think he wanted to stay in bed!)
Many times people encourage us to "get out of the house" without realizing what it really costs. Most of the time we are totally alone in our struggle. Over time, I've gotten used to taking up a whole aisle in a store as I push Chris in front of me and pull the basket along behind. We are quite the sight. This is just one setting where we can feel like we stick out like a sore thumb. But add to that the fact that we are primarily politely ignored and it can feel like we are in an emotional vacuum. Standing in the middle of a crowd we seem invisible.
Being acknowledged this week as real people had me thinking along these lines. I started thinking about how He is intimately acquainted with all our ways; and that He saw us while we were forming in our mother's womb. He really does see us; even if we are invisible to the world. (Psalm 139)
My thoughts raced back to Hagar in Genesis 16 where Hagar had been forced out from Sarah after she got pregnant and cocky.The angel comes to her and tells her that the son in her womb is going to be a donkey of a man and that he's going to live a life at odds with basically everyone. But her response is perfect. To me the angel didn't say real "nice" stuff about Ishmael - which by the way means "God heard."
Even though the angel told her Ishmael is gonna be a wild one - Hagar says this: "You are a God who sees." She was seen she was not invisible to God. That's what she got out of this angelic encounter - that God could see her and where she was. That's so important for us caregivers I think - just to know that He has not abandoned us like so many - He is here, He knows, He hears, and He sees us.
Today I will meditate on the truth that God knows right where I am and He knows the true condition of my heart. He sees the situation and can see into my heart - He sees the confusion, the loneliness, the frustration...and it's okay. My thoughts will be on His ever abiding presence and His habitation in me today. Will you join me?