We all want to be seen, to be noticed, to stand out from the crowd as a person of significance. In fact I believe that’s what’s behind the modern celebrity culture – people who want to be famous for fame’s sake.
So many people feel that they are not really seen by others, and it impacts their sense of well-being, their feelings of self-worth. The response can be a striving to be noticed, which can display as workaholism, or sometimes exhibitionism - a need to be louder, funnier, or more ‘out there’ than anyone else; or alternatively it can result in retreat - people who fade into the background, hiding from the world, the result of an inner belief that if ‘I am not noticed then maybe I am not worth seeing’.
True rest lies in knowing that we are already of immense value and significance. We do not have to work, or otherwise promote ourselves to be noticed, nor do we have to run away thinking of ourselves as unworthy of regard.
There is a story in the Old Testament [Genesis 16] about a young runaway slave girl, alone, pregnant and in the inhospitable desert. A person of little account in the eyes of her contemporaries; a person of no influence or means; a person in a desperate situation. However, in that place the girl had an encounter with the Lord, which led her to name Him El Roi – ‘the God who sees me’. Not only did she learn that the Lord knew her name, He also knew her past, her present and had a plan for her life; far from being a 'non-person', she had great significance in His eyes. And the well at which she had this meeting, was renamed Beer Lahai Roi, ‘The well of the Living One who sees me’. This would be a physical reminder to all who came to drink from it, that there is a God who sees every detail about us, and has pronounced us worthy of His notice.
Jesus demonstrated His recognition for the individual over and over in the Gospel accounts, taking time out to address their particular needs and concerns. He taught that God knows even the number of hairs on your head; and that the Lord who notices every sparrow that falls to the ground, considers you of much more value [Matthew 10:29-31].
Not only that, Jesus thought you were worth paying the ultimate price for - He valued you enough to lay down His life for you [Romans 5:6-8, Galatians 2:20].
You do not have to search for significance you already have it.
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