I had second (and third) thoughts about attending my recent high school reunion. I hadn’t seen most of my former classmates in too many years to count, and — for the most part – I didn’t care. But there were a couple of people I wanted to see again … so I went.
And I pretty much felt invisible. Just like in high school.
Afterwards I was reminded of that song we usually sing when the ball drops at midnight on New Year’s Eve … Should old acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind? Should old acquaintance be forgot, and old lang syne?
Auld lang syne … times gone by … And so I thought about it. Maybe sometimes you should let go of an old acquaintance, especially if the relationship isn’t something that warms your heart, soothes your spirit. But that’s easier said than done.
There’s also the realization that sometimes we only have scabs where we thought we had scars. Scars are evidence of an old wound, but they don’t hurt anymore. Rub on a scar and it’s pretty much dead meat. A scab however can be easily ripped off, revealing the open wound beneath it. Ouch.
I talked about it with Kathy, my friend and co-pastor of our church. She reminded me of the account of Sarai (Sarah) and Hagar in Genesis. While Hagar was Sarai’s maidservant, I’m thinking they must have had a fairly close relationship. After all, Hagar was by Sarai’s side most of the time, seeing to her comforts, taking care of the day-to-day tasks of Sarai’s life. You couldn’t have that type of relationship if you had a personality clash. And while the whole idea of sending our husbands to another’s woman’s bed is appalling, I can see where Sarai would rather have that other woman be someone she loved and trusted than someone she disliked or had no relationship with.
But of course that whole situation was totally out of God’s will, and conflict arose between Hagar and Sarai (duh!). And Hagar fled. The Lord came to Hagar and asked her, “Where did you come from and where are you going?”
Wow. She had come from a situation of fear and hurt and harshness … and she ran away. Just like I do when I feel unwanted, unappreciated … invisible. Where did you come from? What are those things in my past that keep flooding back? Did I do anything to cause them? If I did, is there any way I can fix that?
And where am I going? Where do I want to end up in my life? Will I let these old wounds cripple my progress, trip me up on my journey?
The truth is that my life is hidden with Christ in God. He’s the one who has given me my identity, and He says I’m wanted, I’m accepted, I’m needed, I’m loved.
Hagar called the Lord, “The Living One Who Sees Me.” What a joy that is to know! I am never invisible to God.