The Invisible Woman: A Special Story for MothersThe Invisible Woman: A Special Story for Mothers
Nicole Johnson
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* Charlotte Fisher has two children, a good marriage, and a big problem---her family sees what she does, but they can't see her! When a friend shares a book on the great cathedrals of Europe and their anonymous artisans, Charlotte is amazed to find the answer to her question, "Do I matter?"---and you will, too! 93 pages, hardcover from Nelson.
     

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 When did you perform your first one-woman drama show and how did you get started in the business?

It was about 8 years ago. I'd been performing for a number of years and had been writing and touring marriage material when Mary Graham of Women of Faith® asked me to write for their women's conference. So I began performing solo for Women of Faith® in 2000.
What was your motivation for writing The Invisible Woman: When Only God Sees? I notice itís dedicated to your sister. Was she your source of inspiration?
There is so much that women do that goes unnoticed by this results oriented world. My sister, Vanessa, has 13 children. Her days are FULL of tasks and responsibilities that no one notices. She is the most beautiful invisible woman I know.
In The Invisible Woman, a book about cathedrals was given to your fictitious character, Charlotte Fisher. Is this a real book available today? If so, what is the name of the book? If not, where did the idea come from?
Unfortunately, itís not a real book - I wish it were. The idea came from the truths I learned about the Great Cathedrals from various sources. I decided to create a "book" that would help Charlotte understand the characteristics that were similar to her situation as a mother. It was the only thing I could think of other than having her visit Europe and see for herself, but that would be another book.
You compare mothers to cathedral builders. How are they alike and how is the end result of their labor similar?
Just a few thoughts...
  1. No one can name the names of the builders of many of the great Cathedrals.
  2. Some of these great churches took over 100 years to complete — way more than one working man's lifetime. So in essence, they showed up every day on a job that had no "closure".
  3. They made sacrifices to work day after day and performed tasks that no one would ever really see ó only the completed work (if they did it well).
  4. They worked for an audience greater than themselves or those around them, namely God. They trusted that He saw everything and that the work they did, that no one saw, still mattered in His eyes.
Mothers feel invisible when their hard work and sacrifice go unnoticed by their husbands and children. Do you think they should let their loved ones know how they feel? After all, the desire for recognition of good work seems like a reasonable expectation.
It is reasonable to expect a certain amount of recognition, but every mother knows there is not enough recognition in the world to match the kind of sacrifice she makes ó so the question is what to do with the difference? The Invisible Woman helps women know how to trust that God sees the things that others miss.
You tell a fascinating tale of how cathedral artisans sometimes carved out their best work in places that would be hidden away and never seen. Why did they do that and what does it have to do with mothers?
It is such a curious choice, isn’t it? I recount one story (told many times for sure) about a laborer carving a bird into a beam that would be covered over by a part of the roof. Someone questions why the laborer is spending so much time on something that no one will ever see. It’s reported that the worker replied, “Because God sees.” To see the way this laborer endowed his work with that kind of sacred responsibility is an inspiration to me when I think the short cuts don’t matter or the sacrifices go unnoticed. I’m so deeply touched by that story.
How would a motherís understanding of how God uses her to build a special and unique part of his kingdom affect her attitude?
She could recognize that just like that worker who carved the bird, she is carving "birds" into the lives of her children and her work matters a great deal. She doesnít have to wait for any one else to endow her work with the kind of meaning she hungers for, she does her work as unto the Lord. When she falls into bed at night and her husband has no idea what sheís been doing all day, she can smile because God is so pleased, and touched, by her invisibility.
Anything else you'd like to share with us?
"Invisibility is Love's greatest costume, given to it's choicest of servants."