For me, it was only six months, but the struggle as I waited between ministries was arduous. To say I felt forgotten would be an understatement! I can’t imagine how Joseph felt day after day, waiting and hoping the butler would remember him. Joseph had given the butler great news. He would be restored to his position in the service to Pharaoh. Joseph’s simple request after he delivered the good news, “Think on me when it shall be well with thee, and shew kindness, I pray thee, unto me, and make mention of me unto Pharaoh, and bring me out of this house” (Genesis 40:14).
Then he waited. He probably heard all about the reinstatement of the butler and the baker’s capital punishment. Any day now he would hear a messenger call for him. The keys would jingle and the jailer would call out, “Joseph, there’s someone here to see you!” He probably replayed the moment over and over in his mind, but then he was only dreaming. Over six hundred nights of dreaming turned into a nightmare of being forgotten.
God’s timeline, however, is always punctual. Imagine how different it would be if Joseph had been released one day too early! He probably would have run as far away from the Egyptian nightmare as he possibly could. While the butler had forgotten Joseph, God had never forgotten him. God will never forget you.
In one of the treasured Psalms David says, “How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! How great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: When I awake, I am still with thee” (Psalm 139:17-18). Jeremiah, hundreds of years later, reassures the people who would feel forgotten in exile, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end” (Jeremiah 29:11). The feeling of being forgotten is almost like a bad dream. You want to pinch your arm, slap your face, so you wake up! When you do awake, you realize, “I am still with thee.”
A man was about to slip into eternity. He was discarded as a criminal—useless to anyone, he had nothing worthy of memory. His name would dot the register of thieves who got what they deserved. He feared to be forgotten and called out, “Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom” (Luke 23:42). From the cross next to his, Jesus Christ reassured him, “Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise” (Luke 23:43). The mind of the Son of God would surely transport this repentant criminal to the glories of heaven! Even in death, he would not be forgotten. When He was on the cross, you were on his mind. You will forever be on the mind of God. Never feel forgotten. His thoughts for you “are more than can be numbered” (Psalm 40:5).