Several years ago, my wife and I accidently left our youngest son at church. Jesus could identify with that. His parents left him at church when he was 12 years old. If I remember correctly for some reason we had driven separate cars and each went home thinking the other was bringing our son with them. It didn’t take three days for us to learn that he was left behind. Some of our friends from church brought him home. He arrived shortly after we did. We tried to convince him that it was an accident, though years later we teased that it was on purpose.

There is a psychological condition called athazagoraphobia. It is the fear of being forgotten. That anxiety can be debilitating. One who suffers from this phobia feels the need to constantly check in with the family while they are traveling. Any change in plans can bring on a panic attack.

The weeping prophet, Jeremiah expressed the thoughts of God’s people after the destruction of Jerusalem in 586 B.C. “Why do you always forget us? Why do you forsake us so long?” (Lamenatations 5:20, NIV) The problem was not that God had forsaken them, but they had forsaken God.

The prophet Isaiah quotes the people saying, “The LORD has forsaken me, the Lord has forgotten me.” Then he gives God’s response, “Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands.” (Isaiah 46:14-16, NIV)

Dr. Wayne Shaw (R-Grove) has been a member of the Oklahoma Senate since 2014. Prior to that he served as the senior pastor at First Christian Church, Grove, for many years.