Do you ever feel invisible?
I’m not talking literally, like superhero-ring-of-power-invisibility-cloak type of invisible. I’m talking the type of invisible you feel when others fail to notice you.
This happens when you’re driving, and someone pulls in front of you as if you aren’t even on the road in your vehicle. It happens when you’re at the grocery store and people walk in front of you as you’re walking down the aisle, and you have to stop abruptly to prevent yourself from running into them.
Worst of all, though, is when someone you are talking with suddenly starts having a conversation with someone else. Sometimes, it’s when two or more people you were talking to suddenly only talk to each other and make it quite obvious that you are not a part of that conversation.
Another type of invisibility involves your contributions. This happens when you consistently and faithfully go about your commitments, and no one really says anything. Until you make a mistake. Then they say something.
Feeling invisible in these ways frustrates me and is one of the quickest routes to a bad mood that I find difficult to shake. I mean, I’m sure all of these people overlooked me on purpose.
Do you ever wish you were invisible?
Now I am talking about the superhero-ring-of-power-invisibility-cloak type of invisible. (As an aside, scientists have discovered how to actually make something invisible See the video here.)
Where would you go? What would you do?
Maybe you would listen in on conversations to find out what people really think of you. Think about it. You could get someone all riled up, leave the room to put on whatever it is that makes you invisible, and then follow that person to find out if you become the topic of a conversation.
Or maybe you would start messing with people. You could blow in someone’s ear, throw sunflower seeds at someone, or even follow them around until they get the feeling they’re being watched.
The Invisible God
Really, much of what significantly impacts our lives is invisible. Sound waves. Heat waves. Wind. Oxygen. You see the impact, sure, but not the element itself. Actually, we could not continue to function or even exist without the invisible.
Interesting that the idea of invisibility, whether in fiction or real life and depending on its various forms and conditions, can both benefit as well as negatively impact our lives.
Take this beyond the scientific and into the spiritual and consider that God – the creator of the universe… of sound, heat, wind & oxygen – is also invisible (1 Timothy 1:17; Colossians 1:15). We also know our faith is based on what is yet unseen.
“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. (Hebrews 11:1)”
Our faith and our hope are all based on the invisible. Even our true struggles take place in the unseen.
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6:12)
In then follows that our focus should be more on the invisible.
“For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:17-18)
We can choose to overlook the invisible God and the unseen forces that battle around us, and we can choose to not focus on that intangible unseen force of love. Or we can choose to take in the reality of what the invisible means for our lives and let it become a part of our reality.
How do we do this?
- Realize that troubles are opportunities that help us look beyond this life and to place our hope in the eternal God.
- Understand that our ultimate hope is that this life is not all there is and that there is life beyond what we can see.
- Believe that we will live with God in eternity to help us live above the pain of the present.
- Be directed by God’s Holy Spirit within us and protected by his armor around us. (Ephesians 6:11-17)
Would you be invisible if you could?
When my boys were growing up, we’d periodically talk about what kind of mythical beings we would be and what powers or abilities we would have if we could. Invisibility is not one of my choices. (In case you’re curious, I would be a Jedi Elf. Think Obi Wan morphed with Legolas.)
I have felt invisible before and hated it. Even more than my personal feelings, I just feel that the invisible really exists for that which is much higher than myself.
Ultimately for now, the unseen exists as a matter of faith. Without doubt — being completely sure — faith would have no place in my life. For that reason, I choose to believe in an invisible God. I choose to focus on the unseen force of love and to bank my soul on the reality of an eternity in Heaven. In that way, really, the invisible directs me and exists as more of a reality than anything tangible I can verify with my five senses.