Feeling faceless in a facebook world? You are not alone. (but how would you know that if you are isolated? I feel a new support group being born) We all want to know that we matter; at least to someone, somewhere. Connection. We long for it, we live for it, we seek it out. Without it we die. In our culture, which emphasizes individuality over community, this search for connection and therefore mattering is made all the more difficult. We are told to pursue ourselves, our own interests and goals, rather than pursuing relationships with others and being of service to them. We measure our worth by money and fame. Both are transitory and ever changing.
Social media is now available to assist us in our quest for mattering and connection. We tweet, we twitter, we text, we snapchat, we facetime, we facebook; hoping desperately that someone out there is paying attention, that someone out there is listening. Hoping that we have been heard, that someone out there sees us, really sees us, understands us and cares about the way that we take. It’s a noisy world out there, we think. (and we are right) Everyone is talking, who is there to listen? Who is there to hear us? Who is there to care?
But there is Someone. Someone who sees us, who sees me, as He did Hagar. Someone who knows our circumstances, who knows my circumstances, as He knew Job’s. Someone who knows every hair on my head and cares for me as a shepard cares for His sheep. Our Creator, the Living God, who stretched out the heavens and calls every star by name. That’s Who! and miracle of miracles, He knows my name and He knows your name. In fact, it is engraved on the palms of His hands.
“He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name.” (Psalm 147:4)
“See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are ever before Me.” (Is. 49:16)
We DO matter to the One who created us, we are assured of this fact in His word. He cares for us and will never leave us nor forsake us. (Deut. 31:16) He watches over our coming and going, He will neither slumber nor sleep. (Psalm 121) Our Creator knows us and He hears us. “Before a word is on my tongue You know it completely, O Lord.” (Psalm 139:4)
We can find our significance in belonging to the One who created us, our Heavenly Father. Who wouldn’t want to belong to the Living God? A God who left His place in glory to become flesh and walk among us, sharing our pain, experiencing our suffering. A God who gave His life to pay our sin debt and so reconcile us to Himself. A God who loves us with an everlasting love and is faithful even when we are unfaithful. A God who forgives sin and heals the sinner. (Psalm 103:3)
I have turned my back on God, not the other way around. God did not turn away from me, I rebelled, wanting my own way rather than following God’s way. I trusted in myself, rather than my Creator. “We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way;” (Isaiah 53:6) Yet God pursues me still. “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving kindness.” (Jeremiah 31:3)
In my search for significance, in my desire to be heard, I cry out to God who sees me and hears me. When I seek my identity from this temporal world, I can’t be assured that I am truly seen or that I have even been heard. I am not guaranteed a response. How different it is with my Heavenly Father; He sees me, He hears me, He responds and cares for me out of His all sufficient grace and mercy.
“The righteous cry out and the Lord hears them; He delivers them from all their troubles.” (Psalm 34:17)
“Call to Me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” (Jeremiah 33:3)
“For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His love for those who fear Him.” (Psalm 103:11)
“Does He not see my ways and count my every step?” (Job 31:4)
Take heart! You are seen! You are heard! You are loved! You are cared for! You are answered! by God, Creator of heaven and earth, who showed His love in Jesus, whom He sent here to be with us for a short time in order to make known His message of redemption for us for all time.
My tweets and twitters may go unheeded, falling on deaf ears, but never my prayers. I have God’s word on that. He’s collecting them, saving them along with all my tears. My significance lies not in WHO I am but in WHOSE I am. I can rest in that. God saw Hagar alone in the desert all those centuries ago and He sees me alone in my desert today.
“She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her. ‘You are the God who sees me,’ for she said, ‘I have now seen the One who sees me.’ ” (Genesis 16:13)
Even Job, in all his troubles and trials, knew that God saw him, believed that God cared about his suffering, believed that God would not abandon him (all evidence to the contrary) and believed that God would reward him in the end.
“But He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I will come forth as gold.” (Job 23:10)
my search for significance ends when I rest in relationship with my Heavenly Father, yours will too,
sincerely, Grace Day