I remember being in second grade and sleeping in an attic bedroom. I felt alone, scared and disconnected from my mom, stepfather and my brother—my father's biological child.
I remember being in sixth grade and feeling too chubby and awkward for anyone to like me. I wondered if I could ever capture a guy's attention or a guy's heart.
I remember being a senior in high school, but instead of being at school I was sitting at home, depressed and pregnant. My boyfriend already had a new girlfriend. I wondered if there would ever be a man who would love me and my child.
And during each of those times, I prayed. I prayed to belong. I prayed to be chosen. I prayed to be worthy of a lifelong commitment.
I'd forgotten about those times until just this morning, when I read in Bible about Joseph locked in prison. Joseph hadn't done anything wrong. God had even granted him the ability to interpret the dreams of the chief baker and cupbearer. Joseph only asked for one thing: not to be forgotten. He simply wanted the men whom he helped to remember him and offer help in return. But it didn't happen.
"Pharaoh's chief cup-bearer, however, forgot all about Joseph, never giving him another thought" (Gen. 40:23, NLT).
Joseph may have felt forgotten for a time, but God remembered him. God knew exactly where Joseph was. God was with him, and when the season of Joseph's kingdom service came, God helped the chief cupbearer to remember him, too, and within days Joseph went from prison cell to palace seat.
Do you feel forgotten?
Have you prayed to belong? Have you prayed to be chosen? Have you prayed for a spouse, a child or a long-desired dream?
People may forget. You may have pushed your prayers to the back of your mind, but God remembers.
We have to trust God even when we feel forgotten: "Even though the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines; even though the olive crop fails, and the fields lie empty and barren; even though the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty, yet I will rejoice in the Lord! I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!" (Hab. 3:17-18).
And in your waiting, also have the faith to look ahead: "'The time will come,' says the Lord, 'when the grain and grapes will grow faster than they can be harvested. Then the terraced vineyards on the hills of Israel will drip with sweet wine!" (Amos 9:13).
Do you feel forgotten? God remembers.
Do you feel alone? God remembers.
Do you feel that someone who should be on your side isn't giving you another thought? God is there.
Keep turning to Him. Keep praying. In the right moment, God's timing will come and His purpose will be displayed. You will enjoy a harvest of blessings in a way you couldn't have experienced unless you'd walked through the silent days.
Now, how about you? When is a time that you felt forgotten? How did God show up?
Tricia Goyer has written more than 35 books, including novels that delight and entertain readers and non-fiction titles that offer encouragement and hope. She has also published more than 500 articles in national publications, such as Guideposts, Thriving Family, Proverbs 31, and HomeLife Magazine.