By Kristine Bolt
“God doesn’t care about me.”
It’s your most closely guarded secret. “I feel like God doesn’t care about me. And sometimes, I feel like He’s completely abandoned me.”
It’s so secret that you probably haven’t fully admitted it to yourself. Because it’s unsettling, right?
After all, aren’t you a bad Christian for feeling like God has abandoned you? And won’t He punish you for thinking that He doesn’t care about you?
Actually, He won’t. God already knows what’s in your heart. So the best thing you can do now is face and deal with it.
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Why You Feel Like God Doesn’t Care About You
Life being what it is, just about everyone has experienced significant emotional pain or trauma. These are expected, though, because, well…life.
And while these expected hurts can test your faith, it’s the small, everyday pain that builds up and undermines your belief about God’s care for you.
So which of these reasons have you feeling abandoned by God?
1. Your Unanswered Prayers
Your overflowing prayer journals are a testament to your desperation. But what have you gotten from God in return?
Nothing. For years.
You’ve prayed every way you know. You’ve even begged God on your knees to solve your problems.
And He’s given you silence in return.
So you’ve concluded: “How can God care about me? If He did, my anguish would have touched His heart by now.”
2. You Feel Ordinary
In your desperation, you look up Bible verses about God’s love for you. And the first one that comes up is:
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16 (ESV)
But it rings hollow in your heart. Because, yes, Jesus died for you. But He also died for the entire world.
In a crowd of over 7 billion people, you’re just one ordinary, indistinguishable face.
So how can God care about you, specifically?
3.You Feel That Your Problems Are Insignificant
Between global pandemics, famines, and man-made disasters, it sometimes feels like the world has gone crazy.
Compared to the suffering on your TV every day, how can God possibly care about your insignificant problems?
So you conclude that God has bigger things to handle, and now you’re positive: “No, God definitely doesn’t care about me.”
Why Your Feelings Are Wrong
Maybe one or all of these reasons resonate. But you still hope you’re wrong, aren’t you?
Otherwise, you’d have given up praying by now.
But you keep crying out to God because you’re desperate to believe that He does care about you. No matter what your feelings say.
Good news: your feelings are lying. God loves you beyond measure, and He hasn’t abandoned you.
How do I know? Because the Bible says so. And Jesus Himself said that the Bible is God’s truth (John 17:17).
1. His Faithfulness
You’re not alone in feeling like God has abandoned you. David felt the same way.
My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, from the words of my groaning? O my God, I cry by day, but you do not answer, and by night, but I find no rest. Psalm 22:1-2 (ESV)
In fact, Jesus quoted this same verse on the cross. And we know that God cared about David and Jesus immeasurably.
Just like He cares about you.
2. His Careful Attention
In psalm after psalm, David poured out his most negative and uncomfortable feelings. But he always went back to what God does.
For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. Psalm 139:13-14 (ESV)
With great care and attention, God handmade you. Just like He made every wonderful thing you see around you. You’re part of His amazing creation.
And because He carefully handmade you, you’re no ordinary woman. Even among 7 billion people.
3. His Thoughts
No matter how much you or anybody else in your life belittles your problems, they’re lying.
Your problems matter to God. Because you matter to Him.
How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I would count them, they are more than the sand. I awake, and I am still with you. Psalm 139:17-18 (ESV)
Only someone who cares about you thinks about you nonstop. And God thinks countless thoughts about you.
What To Do When You Feel Like God Doesn’t Care About You
So now you’ve admitted that you feel like God doesn’t care about you. And you’ve seen where your feelings are lying to you. Feels good, right?
Be warned, though: your feelings will be back with their lies again.
So what can you do? Be ready with a plan to conquer your thought, “I feel like God doesn’t care about me.”
Tell Him About It
The first thing David did was to share his raw feelings with God. How awful it felt to think that God had abandoned him.
I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint; my heart is like wax; it is melted within my breast; my strength is dried up like a potsherd, and my tongue sticks to my jaws; you lay me in the dust of death. Psalm 22:14-15
Wow. Wasn’t it bold of David to be so honest with God? And God didn’t condemn or punish him for it.
In fact, true relationship is built on a foundation of honesty and open communication. So David’s candid outpouring of his anguish over what felt like God’s lack of care probably even helped strengthen his relationship with God.
Remember What He’s Done
But David didn’t spend all of his prayer time in anguish. He also recalled what God did in the past.
Yet you are holy, enthroned on the praises of Israel. In you our fathers trusted; they trusted, and you delivered them. To you they cried and were rescued; in you they trusted and were not put to shame. Psalm 22:3-5 (ESV)
Right now, it feels like God’s been silent in your life for years. But in reality, you know He hasn’t.
So deliberately recall specific times when He’s come through for you.
The unexpected check in the mail. The job offer. The small, everyday miracles. Remember them.
Again, David didn’t stop at reminiscing about God’s past deeds. He also praised Him.
I will tell of your name to my brothers; in the midst of the congregation I will praise you: You who fear the Lord, praise him! All you offspring of Jacob, glorify him, and stand in awe of him, all you offspring of Israel! Psalm 22:22-23 (ESV)
So when you recall that check in the mail, job offer, and everyday miracle, praise God for them. Praise Him for who He is, for what He has done, and what for He will do.
God Cares About You
Wow! You admitted, “Lord, I feel like You don’t care about me.” Then you recalled proof that He does, and you’ve praised Him for it.
Your prayer journal suddenly feels a little different, doesn’t it?
Because now you know for sure that God hasn’t abandoned you. That He cares about you. Because He says so.
Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows. Luke 12:6-7 (ESV)