There have been specific times in my life when I did not feel seen. It has happened at various times while I was growing up and even after I became an adult. The results were always devastating. Before I found a semblance of healing, my natural response was to get more and more outrageous in behavior until someone acknowledged me. I have since learned healthier ways to navigate my need to be seen, especially by those that I love.
So, in the spirit of camaraderie with anyone who is walking an exceptionally challenging valley right now, I am just here to say I see you.
To anyone who is still reeling from the impacts of childhood (and adult) trauma, I see you. I see you doing your best to heal from what wounded you. Even when you do not necessarily have all the tools. Jesus mourns with you in your mourning and He died to redeem you from its impact. Therapy, counseling and professional help is not shameful. It is a God-given tool in your deliverance and wholeness. Use them as often as the need arises and God will complete the work, in this life and the next.
To anyone who is waiting and waiting for God to fulfill the promise He made to you what seemed like many lifetimes ago. I see you. I see you being faithful even when others have long since abandoned the higher calling. I see you holding on to the flicker of hope left in your heart, willing the flame to live. And I see you mourning your empty hands that have failed to grasp what your heart so deeply desires. And I want you to know that you have every right to your pain. Your feelings are valid and you are not a bad Christian for mourning so deeply. Jesus knows our sorrows; He is with you and He loves you. You are not being punished. If God has promised, He will fulfill. Remain obedient, remain faithful and remain steadfast. He will uphold you in the waiting and your joy WILL be full.
To anyone grieving a loss that the world may not necessarily know about. I see you. And I know that you are walking through the valley of the shadow of death. But fear not. Even in this seemingly desolate place, you are not forgotten. I see you carrying the sackcloth and ashes of your despair. I see you heavy under the weight of your loss. And God sees you. He will be with you. He will lead you beside still waters. He will restore your soul. You have gone out mourning but you will come back rejoicing. Cling ever closer to Calvary. Cry, weep, lay it all before Him. Yell, scream, give voice to the silent anger in your heart about the unfairness of what you are being tasked to carry. It is okay. God is not offended by your emotions. He created them and He is best capable of managing them. He will still love you in your anger. He will still love you in your pain. He is still with you in your mourning. He sees you and I see you.
To anyone whose marriage is in crisis or has drifted irrevocably towards divorce. I see you. And I am so sorry. This was not the future you imagined when you said your vows. This was not what we expected when you wore your dress and walked that aisle. This was not the outcome you planned for when you joined your lives or started your family. It has been said that divorce/separation is akin to the death of a loved one. You have every right to mourn this tragedy. I see you and I am praying for you. I am praying that the God of reconciliation and resurrection works in your heart as only He can do. That what man has called dead will hear the word of God and come back to life, better than before. I pray that the glory of your latter days will be greater than the former. You are not broken because your marriage failed. God can still make beautiful things out of these ashes. He can reconcile hearts to Himself and one another. He can rebuild what men have broken. He can do the impossible. Cling to the hope of resurrection and life. He will sustain you.
When you feel forgotten in your circumstance, know that you are fully known and fully loved by your Heavenly Father. He loves you and He sees you.
And so do I.