Living Unrestricted When You Feel Unseen

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I asked my dear friend, Renee Griffin, to share her beautiful heart with you today. Knowing that I would be away at camp with spotty cell reception and no wifi, I recruited Renee to keep this series going. I trust her with your heart because I trust her with mine. I know you will love her as much as I do! Thinking of you all and praying for you! ~Jennifer

The sound of pounding feet on the hot, dry sand matched the rhythm of her racing heart. The two beats clanged in terrifying harmony as she propelled weary legs forward. Unwilling to endure another second of her hellish circumstances, she raced into the arid desert accepting the risk of death. 

The undeserved curses and brutal names banged in her memory like a pinball machine. 

Bang. Bang. Bang. 

Hurtful, hateful words struck her tender inner places. Sobs choked her voice as she screamed into to the barren land.

“I don’t deserve this!”

“Why me? I’m innocent!”

“Nobody cares! Nobody even sees me!”

Sounds like the beginning of a summer novel, but it’s not. It’s my imagination running wild through the eyes of a slave girl. More about that in a minute…

Hi, there!

Thanks for welcoming me into your space here on Jennifer’s blog. She’s off serving the youth at church camp, and she graciously asked me to blog-sit and take care of her #unrestrictedsummer readers.

Her trust in me to speak to you is an honor, and I don’t take it lightly. I’ve prayed asking the Lord for the words He has for you.

The ONLY words He gave come from the story in Genesis about a slave named Hagar.

If Hagar was alive today, she’d probably be reading Jennifer’s #unrestrictedsummer series because girlfriend was all kinds of restricted.

I hope you didn’t mind my dramatic introduction, but I’ve read Hagar’s story so many times I can almost feel the desert’s heat.

She lived trapped in a life she didn’t choose and suffered consequences she didn’t deserve.

I call her the #unseen woman.

She’s not the main character in this family drama, but forced to play a role. Her compliance and obedience, expected but not appreciated, earned a target of fury smack between her eyes.

She endured many undeserved blows before running away.

Can you relate? I can.

Other people’s decisions and sometimes our own, can weigh us down with such heaviness, we race toward a different risk to escape our current pain.

Hagar fled into a dangerous desert, willing to face a physical death, in order to escape a mental one.

We can suffer even when we’ve done everything right. 

We can be innocent and still punished. 

We can be honest and faithful, yet still lied to and betrayed. 

Full of private pain, we carry on, feeding our families, going to work, serving at church. Sometimes, no one even sees the trauma behind our masks. We stay on our journey, seeking to please God and obey His word.

We are the #unseen women.

I know you’re out there. I wish I could reach through this screen and lift your chin raising your eyes toward heaven.

I’d say to you, through tears, the same words God gave me from the pages of scripture.

You are SEEN by the UNSEEN God. 

You are never out of His sight. 

You are never forgotten, and never discarded.

He counts every sacrifice, and gathers all your tears.

He is working it all out for your good and His glory.

Your obedience and sacrifice are eternal investments.

Even if no one else sees your faithfulness, endurance, and perseverance, God does.

If you feel #unseen, I want to offer you two actions.

  1. Look up.

(Pray these words putting your name in the blank.)

“You are the God who sees ________. I have NOW SEEN the One who SEES me.”

2. Look around.

One of the sweetest gifts birthed inside suffering, is the ability to recognize pain. When you’ve seen pain in the mirror, you notice it in others.

We are surrounded by #unseen women, walking faithfully in the midst of trauma and tragedy. I promise you, #unseen women are your friends, family, and neighbors. Look for them and ask the Lord to give you opportunities to minister.

You never know how powerful a kind word, encouraging message, or a sweet treat could be to a weary #unseen woman. You could take the very pain the enemy is trying to use for your destruction and use it to be His Hands and Feet in the life of another.

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 4:18 NIV



Renee is a gifted writer, foodie, crazy funny, and rooted deeply in her faith. She writes for women who feel unseen and reminds them that God knows exactly where they are. Go follow her on all social media outlets…she is the best!

You can connect with Renee here.