Did God forget about me? We’ve all asked ourselves this question at one time or another. Whether it’s because our prayers seem unanswered or tough circumstances are stretching on longer than we hoped, feeling forgotten by God can be despairing situation.
For those days when our faith doesn’t feel like enough and doubt creeps in, I’ve outlined 5 truths and several Bible verses about feeling forgotten. Together with these reminders, I hope you know and truly believe that God has not forgotten you.
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When You Feel Forgotten – Confronting Your Feelings
As Christians, sometimes we feel like we are exempt from feelings of loneliness and hopelessness. Or worse, we think that we shouldn’t have these emotions, so we hide or suppress them instead of dealing with them.
Confronting our feelings—especially when you feel forgotten by God—is important, despite how difficult it is.
Understanding how emotions affect us and control us (if we let them) is vital to knowing what to do when you feel God has forgotten you. When you feel forgotten but recognize the emotion, you investigative what’s driving the feelings and respond to them with the truth of God’s word.
Did God Forget about Me?
To know you are not alone, here are some examples of when I felt forgotten by God in my own life.
After graduation, I spent a year in the tiny country of Andorra teaching English. I loved Andorra—the unique mix of cultures, plenty of hiking a couple blocks from the city center, and the breathtaking mountain views. But this tiny country was extremely isolated.
A mixture of demographics, rough terrain, and the inability to travel left me feeling more alone than ever.
At work, it was difficult to connect with the kids, and the other teachers hardly included me in their activities. Conflicts with my host family made home life stressful. To top it all off, I was missing my family and unsure of when I’d see them again.
I felt like God had forgotten me. I couldn’t understand why he had brought me here to Andorra. And if he had a reason, then why were my circumstances still so hard?
Why do I feel God is so far away?
During my hardest days in Andorra, I felt like I was doing everything right spiritually. I was praying, spending time in God’s word, and participating in church services. So why did I feel God was far away when I was doing all the things I thought I was supposed to?
Here are 5 additional reasons why I feel like God is so far away when I’m feeling forgotten by God:
- I am going through the motions of being a follower of Jesus, but my heart isn’t really in it. In other words, I’m checking the boxes of what I think a Christian should do. However, I’m not really engaging with God, meditating on his word, or experiencing his presence.
- I’m unsure what it looks like to live for God in a new place, job, or situation. Going to Andorra, I felt like I had to relearn what it meant to be a Christian. Moving from the South of the US where there is a church on every corner and it’s easy to find Christian friends, I had to work ten times as hard just to find a church in Andorra. For that reason, it felt like God was so far away in Andorra.
- My prayer isn’t being answered the way that I want it to be. God answers prayer requests in 3 ways: Yes, No, or Wait I’ve got something better. However, when we don’t get an immediate yes to our prayer request, we assume God has left our prayer unanswered and feel far from him. But a No and a Wait is still an answer from God.
- My sin is hindering me from connecting to God. When there is unrepented sin in our lives, our relationship with God is most certainly affected. It’s like trying to resume a friendship after a conflict without an apology or reconciliation. Sin in our lives keeps us from experiencing the fullness of a relationship with God.
- I’ve refused to obey God. If God has commanded us to do something and we avoid it, then this puts a wrench in our relationship with God. Similar to how sin hinders us from connecting with God, when we ignore God’s commands or refuse to listen to the Holy Spirit’s convictions, our relationship with God is harmed as a result. In those times, God feels far from us.
As these examples demonstrate, feeling forgotten by God is a surface level issue to a deeper problem. But what do you do if you’re feeling forgotten? First, we turn to the word of God.
11 Bible Verses about Feeling Forgotten by God
Between changing jobs, moving cities, making new friends, and losing old ones, we’ve all faced the heartaches of the day and wondered – Lord, have you forgotten me?
Recognizing this feeling of being forgotten by God is a start to processing our feelings. But it’s also important to take steps to reassure ourselves and our faith with truth from God’s word.
Our emotions may be telling us lies about who God is, his love for us, and who we are. The best way to combat lies is by knowing the truth.
1 – Deuteronomy 31:6
“Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” (ESV)
2 – Isaiah 49:15-16
3 – John 10:14-15
“I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me,just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. “
4 – John 10:28-29
5 – Romans 8:37-39
“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
6 – Psalm 27:10
“For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but the Lord will take me in.”
7 – Micah 7:8
“Rejoice not over me, O my enemy; when I fall, I shall rise; when I sit in darkness, the Lord will be a light to me.”
8 – Psalm 34:18
“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”
9 – Isaiah 44:1-2
10 – Jeremiah 31:3
“The Lord appeared to him from far away. I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you.”
11 – Psalm 103:3
“Know that the Lord, he is God! It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.”
When You Think God Has Forgotten You
Even knowing the bible verses above for when you feel abandoned by God, the feeling may persist. How do you confront your feelings of being forgotten and abandoned?
Why do I feel like God has abandoned me?
First, you need to investigate what could be the root of these feelings. What is telling you the lie that God has forgotten you? Dig deeper and ask yourself: why do I feel like God has abandoned me?
Here are some reasons for why you may feel forgotten by God:
- Satan is trying to distract you from God’s plan for you
- Your prayers seem unanswered or haven’t been answered in the way that you wanted
- Your difficult situation or tough circumstances haven’t gotten better
- You’re feeling like everyone else has a better job, relationship, family, or life
- You’re unsure of your calling and purpose while it looks like everyone else has theirs
- Something you’ve wanted or prayed about for a long time didn’t happen like you expected
- You’re feeling isolated and separated from others or that you can’t relate to anyone
- God feels far away from you – can he really understand what you’re going through? Does he even care?
I Feel God has Forgotten Me
Did you find something that resonated you on this list of signs you feel forgotten by God? I did. In fact, every one of these is a reason why I feel God has forgotten me at one point in my life.
But the purpose of this list is not to further discourage you. It’s to confront your feelings and assess what’s going on in your heart.
And heart problems aren’t fixed with a band-aid, but with the truth and power of God’s word. This brings us to these 5 truths for when you feel forgotten by God to remind you that God has not forgotten you.
1 – God’s Greatest Display of Love for Us is the Cross
Take a moment to contemplate what Jesus did for you on the cross. Understanding and accepting God’s love for you is a huge part of remembering that God has not forgotten you.
Jesus left his throne in heaven to come to earth as a human. He lived as sinless life and was crucified for a crime he didn’t commit. He suffered a painful and humiliating death and took on God’s wrath, including separation from God. Then he defeated death and was resurrected, so that he could forgive our sins and offer us life forever through Him.
When we focus on Jesus and his sacrificial love for us, we fight against feelings of loneliness, hopelessness, and being forgotten by God. Instead we are reminded of the lengths that Jesus was willing to go to save our souls. Knowing this, you can proclaim joyfully that God has not forgotten you.
- Read More about God’s love for us through Jesus with this book: Gentle and Lowly by Dane C. Ortlund
2 – Recognize that Spiritual Warfare is at Play
“Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8)
Satan’s goal is to keep us from experiencing the joy of a relationship with God and from accomplishing God’s purpose for us. Ephesians 6:11-12 reminds us that we are not fighting against this world, but a war in the spiritual realms. Nor are our weapons those of this world, but they are also spiritual in nature.
Calling out the name of Jesus and praying over the situation are 2 ways to fight against the spiritual warfare. Spending more time in God’s word and relying on God to fight your battles are how we fight against spiritual warfare, too.
Recognize that Satan wants you to feel forgotten by God. He is trying to thwart your relationship with God and keep you feeling far from God. Fight back.
Read More about this topic with: Victory in Spiritual Warfare: Outfitting Yourself for the Battle by Tony Evans
3 – Comparing Yourself to Others always leads to Discontentment
Sometimes feeling forgotten by God comes from a feeling of discontentment and envy for what others have. When we compare ourselves to others, we are more aware of what we lack instead of focusing on what we do have and what God is doing in our lives.
Just because your life isn’t turning out like someone else’s doesn’t mean you’ve been forgotten by God. It means he has something else in store for YOU and only you, which is why you should stop comparing yourself to others.
- Dive Deeper with this book: Uninvited: Living Loved When You Feel Less Than, Left Out, and Lonely by Lysa TerKeurst
4 – Faith Means Believing without Seeing
Earlier, I mentioned feeling extremely upset that I felt forgotten by God when I was doing all the spiritual things I was taught to do. But what I failed to recognize was that God never promised us an easy life as a Christian. In fact, Jesus tells us:
In Hebrews 11:1, faith is defined as follows. “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (ESV)
Reflecting on these two verses, I’m reminded that when we feel forgotten by God, choosing to believe the opposite—choosing to believe that God has not forgotten you—is what it means to have faith.
5 – This Too Shall Pass
As I was complaining about the difficulties of being in grad school, my aunt reminded me of this simple truth, “This too shall pass.” This quote applies not only to our circumstances, but to our emotions as well.
But then the waves descends, and the water stills again as the emotion drifts away. Know that you won’t always feel forgotten by God. No matter what has brought up these feelings—know that all those things shall pass.
What to do when you feel God has forgotten you?
You are not the only one who has this feeling of being forgotten by God. God doesn’t want you to feel that way—and neither do I.
Step 1 – Rely on God’s Word – How do I know God has not forgotten me?
Diving into God’s word is how you combat the lie that God has forgotten you. Meditating on Bible verses when you feel abandoned by God remind you of the truth of who God is.
Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross to give us eternal life is how you know that God has not forgotten you. This amazing display of love shows us that if Jesus did all of that so that he could spend eternity with you then he’s not going to just forget you now.
Step 2 – Prayer – How do you pray when you feel abandoned by God
Being honest with yourself is equally important as being honest with God. I used to think that I could only pray when I was in a good mood. On the other hand, we see throughout the Bible that God’s servants, prophets, and anointed kings both lament and praise God.
They are honest with God about their feelings and their circumstances. We see many examples of this from King David in the Psalms. Here is an example of feeling forgotten by God in Psalm 13:
Prayer When You Feel Abandoned by God
- When you feel abandoned by God, you should still pray and pray honestly. Tell God that you feel forgotten by Him. Express your frustration, loneliness, hopelessness, anger, and despair.
- Then ask God to give you the faith you need to endure in this situation. Ask him to remind you that He has not forgotten you. Pray about your feelings and pray God’s word back to him. Psalm 13 is a great prayer to start with as David is also asking Lord, have you forgotten me?
- Lastly, keep praying.
Step 3: Wait & Investigate
Emotions can seem all-consuming at times, especially when we experience them intensely or perpetually. For example, anxiety around exam time can take over during finals week. My anger during my morning commute can ruin an entire day.
In the same way, when you feel forgotten by God, it’s important not to root yourself in the emotion or let it fuel you. You should separate emotion from fact and emotion from truth.
Instead of jumping to the conclusion that “God forgot me,” practice patience.
- Take time to process your feelings and reflect on the state of your heart.
- Give yourself time to let the feelings pass.
- Dig deeper and investigate what else is going on in your life that’s prompting feeling forgotten by God.
Draw closer to God, rely on your faith, and you will feel God drawing you near. The results may not be immediate, but remember that having faith means choosing to believe even though the feeling may not pass right then.
God Has Not Forgotten You
Being honest with ourselves about our emotions is important to getting to the root of the issue when feeling forgotten by God. At the same time, it’s important to address those feelings by speaking truth to ourselves—the truth of God’s word.
The purpose of Scripture is for God to reveal himself to us. Therefore, that’s where we should go to remind ourselves of the truth that God has not forgotten you.
Feeling Forgotten by God Doesn’t Mean You are Forgotten
For me, my situation in Andorra didn’t necessarily improve, but my perspective did change. One of my Christian friends in Andorra reminded me that:
I’m here years later to tell you the same. Wherever you are, whatever your circumstances, I know that God did not bring you all this way to forget you now.
God’s purpose and plan for your life is one that only you can do. God has not forgotten you, and he’s certainly not done with you yet.
What have you done in the past when you feel like God has forgotten you?
Leave me a comment below!
Check out More Posts about Growing in Faith:
- 5 Pieces of Advice for How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others
- How to Find Comfort in God in Our Sorrow and Suffering
- 5 Keys to Accepting God’s Love
- 10 Lessons & Stories to Unlock the Power of Prayer
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