Tuesday, February 16, 2016

When You Feel Forgotten

by Lucinda Secrest McDowell @LucindaSMcDowel


She was waiting by the sink in the ladies room as I began washing my hands.

“Excuse me,” she interrupted, “But the Lord has given me a prophetic word for you.”

I was in Colorado Springs for meetings with my literary agent and publishers. Honestly, the meetings weren’t going very well, and I had escaped our dinner table at the restaurant to have a moment alone. Maybe I never would write another book. Maybe I had nothing more to say…

The stranger continued as I stood there, too startled to speak; “God told me to tell you this: You will not be forgotten.”

I gulped, “Okay. Thanks.”

And then she interjected, “And, oh yeah, something about your stomach. Is there a medical problem? Well, God says that’s going to be okay too.” (Now I was really spooked; and it was years later until I finally understood that part of her word from God.)

But as she left the tiny room, she turned back with a smile, “Remember, you will not be forgotten!”

I never saw her again.

I also never shared this story. Until now, fifteen years later.

It seemed too far-fetched. Too “out there.” Prophecies in bathrooms simply are not part of my normal life—even my spiritual journey.

But I did write it all down in my journal. And I did pray, asking God to show me what, if anything, this was to mean in my life.

As a writer, do you sometimes feel that everyone else is getting the contracts and followers and invitations, and you’re just invisible?

Honestly, sometimes I do feel forgotten.

But the same God who called me to this work also said: I will not forget you!
See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands.”~ Isaiah 49:15-16

In Scripture, when that promise is made, there are two rather interesting reinforcements: one before and one after. Leading into those words is an illustration that hits close to home: “Can a woman forget her nursing child, / fail to pity the child of her womb? / Even these may forget, / but I won’t forget you” (Isaiah 49:15 CEB). As a mother who raised four children, I cannot imagine a world in which I would forget my nursing baby.

And though I don’t have any tattoos, I have certainly written ink reminders on my hand. Sort of like the second reinforcement in that verse: “See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands.” In biblical times a slave would often bear the brand of his master, but what a switch to have the Master inscribing his servant’s name on his hand—a tangible reminder of the covenant between God and His people.

In order for God to forget us, the scars in the palms of His hands must disappear.

And that’s never going to happen, as this old hymn affirms: “My name from the palms of His hands eternity will not erase; Impressed on His heart it remains, in marks of indelible grace. Yes, I to the end shall endure, as sure as the earnest is given; More happy, but not more secure, the glorified spirits in Heaven.” (Toplady, 1771)


Are you worried God might forget you?

I don’t even need the gift of prophecy to reply, “God says you will not be forgotten!” 

TWEETABLES
When you feel forgotten, God reminds us we're not - @LucindaSMcDowel on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

In order for God to forget us, the scars on His hands must disappear - @LucindaSMcDowel (Click to Tweet)


Lucinda Secrest McDowell, M.T.S., is the author of 11 books, contributing author to 25 books, and has published in more than 50 magazines. A graduate of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and Furman University, she studied at the Wheaton Graduate School of Communication and served as Communications Specialist for the Lausanne Committee for World Evangelization (Thailand) and Editor for Billy Graham’s International Conference for Itinerant Evangelists (Netherlands). A member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA), she has received “Writer of the Year” awards from both Mt. Hermon and Blue Ridge Writers Conferences. Cindy speaks internationally through her ministry “Encouraging Words” and co-directs the New England Christian Writers Retreat. Known for her ability to convey deep truth in practical and winsome ways, she writes from “Sunnyside” cottage in New England. Visit her online at www.EncouragingWords.net

Links www.NewEnglandChristianWritersRetreat.com
Blog/website www.EncouragingWords.net

6 comments:

  1. Cindy, I needed this today. Thank you.

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  2. So thankful it was posted at just the right time...

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  3. I'm thankful for the Lord and for you. I'm thankful the bathroom woman was obedient that day and spoke to you.

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  4. God's gifts always have perfect timing. I have not written on my blog since October for a variety of reasons. I have not read this blog for about the same amount of time. Tonight I sat down to try and rekindle my fire and the Good Lord provided the perfect spark, Thank you

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  5. Spot on, a timely and encouraging word, looking forward to spending time exploring your site!

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