Trusting God When You Feel Forgotten
I love when people ask me what my favorite chapter is in the Bible. Mainly because I love talking about it, but I also get great enjoyment out of watching people’s faces when they read the first sentence:
“How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever?”
Psalm 13 is six small verses with big impact where David wrestles with the anguish of trials and dares to express a feeling that you may have felt in your lifetime: he feels forgotten by God. Most believe that this was a time in David’s life when he was being chased by King Saul who had a vendetta to kill him. He was forced to leave his home and go into hiding because of a man with a lot of jealousy and too much power. Maybe you don’t have a king trying to kill you, but as a single mom there is no doubt that you have walked through hard times and may have been tempted to echo David’s words when he wrote:
How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I take counsel in my soul and have sorrow in my heart all the day? How long shall my enemy be exalted over me? (Psalm 13:1-2)
In desperation David cries out to God. So why is this Psalm my favorite? Because it teaches us three incredible things about God when we feel forgotten.
When we feel forgotten, we can talk to God about it.
This was not a “prim and proper” prayer from David. In reality, he is speaking things to God that simply aren’t true. God never leaves us or forsakes us. He is near to the broken hearted. But in this moment? It doesn’t feel that way and David is honest. Many of us have dealt with times in our lives when we may have felt like our emotions didn’t matter. So what do we learn to do? Stuff them down deep, suck it up, and keep going. But what did David do with his? He cried out to God. Tell God how you are feeling. Turn to him and cry out. Yell at the ceiling. Write in your journal. However you want to do it, tell Him.
When we feel forgotten, we can ask God for help.
Consider me and answer me, O Lord my God; light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death, lest my enemy say “I have prevailed over him,” lest my foes rejoice because I am shaken (Psalm 13:3-4).
The God of the universe who created everything from nothing not only cares about your sorrow, but He wants you to talk to Him about it. He is not too busy for you. Take time today to think through what it is that is causing your sorrow, and ask God for help.
When we feel forgotten, we can trust God.
We cry out, we ask for help, but then in the end we do as David did and we trust God even when it is hard.
But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation. I will sing to the Lord, because he has dealt bountifully with me (Psalm 13:5-6).
I love how David reflects back on how generous God has been to him in the past and is strengthened by the steadfast love of God and the salvation only He can bring. God’s past faithfulness allows David to feel peace in the midst of trials and sorrows. Focus on that today, let God raise your head, and know that you are not forgotten.