Summary: In times of hurt, injustice and loneliness, God sees you.
GOD SEES YOUR PAIN
"7 Now the Angel of the Lord found her by a spring of water in the wilderness, by the spring on the way to Shur. 8 And He said, “Hagar, Sarai’s maid, where have you come from, and where are you going?” She said, “I am fleeing from the presence of my mistress Sarai.” 9 The Angel of the Lord said to her, “Return to your mistress, and submit yourself under her hand.” 10 Then the Angel of the Lord said to her, “I will multiply your descendants exceedingly, so that they shall not be counted for multitude.” 11 And the Angel of the Lord said to her: “Behold, you are with child, and you shall bear a son. You shall call his name Ishmael, because the Lord has heard your affliction. 12 He shall be a wild man; His hand shall be against every man, and every man’s hand against him. And he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren.” 13 Then she called the name of the Lord who spoke to her, You-Are-the-God-Who-Sees; for she said, “Have I also here seen Him who sees me?” Genesis 16:7-13.
In ancient times it was not unusual for a wife to arrange for her husband to have children with her maid. You may remember it also happens with Bilhah and Zilpah, the maids of Rachel and Leah, the wives of Jacob. Genesis 30:1-8. It was a common practice then. Sarai (who later became Sarah) had been married for years without a child. So, she suggested that Abram (later known as Abraham), take her maid as a concubine. That maid is called Hagar! So Hagar found herself in a precarious situation. No one asked her if that’s what she wanted. Hagar is forced to bear a child for Sarah. She had no power to disobey her mistress. She is silent when Sarah gives her to Abram because she is bound to perform whatever is asked of her. And Abram? He agreed to do what his wife suggested. He slept with Hagar. She became his concubine. But the trouble started, however, when Hagar realizes she is pregnant and begins to take pride in it. Hagar began to despise her mistress. In return, Sarai mistreated her. She hated Hagar and made her life miserable. When the situation becomes unbearable, Hagar ran away. The pain, stress, and betrayal caused her to run away. With no friend in sight, she fled into the wilderness. In the wilderness, she had a divine encounter! Twice she was persecuted. And twice He rescued her. Twice she was discouraged. And twice he comforted her. Genesis 21:17. Twice El Roi, The God Who Sees, came to her aid. She was belittled, abused, and demeaned by others, but God lifted up her spirit. Twice El Roi, The God Who Sees, meets Hagar in her wilderness of loneliness, rejection, trouble and pain. Twice El Roi, The God Who Sees, helped her. He sought her. He saw her. She thought no one cared if she lived or died. But God saw her. He cared! He called her by name. God listened to her. He understood her plight. God spoke to her about her future and directed her on what to do next. He provided for her in the midst of her pain. Twice Hagar gave up hope. And twice, El Roi, The God Who Sees, appeared to her and restored her hope. Twice she thought her story was over. And twice, El Roi, The God Who Sees, showed Himself to Hagar and gave her new beginnings. Twice she was the recipient of divine promises.
Life’s never fair to anyone! No one is exempt from troubles. So many things happen that we cannot understand or control. When friends and family abandons, it can often feel like God has given up on us, too. You may be going through a season of rejection, abandonment, loss, grief, or uncertainty. But do not be discouraged; God will never leave you. The Bible reminds us that God is faithful, just and fair! So when you feel forgotten like an outcast, discarded as worthless or belittled as nothing, be assured that God will uplift, comfort, strengthen, and support you. He knows and sees you! El Roi, the God Who Sees, knows exactly where you're in your life's journey and what you're going through. You are not lost and alone! Just as He gave encouragement and instruction to Hagar in her darkest times, so He'll encourage and instruct us today!
"The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their cry." Psalm 34:15.
God created you for His divine purposes. You're not a product of errors, trials and mistakes; there's a divine purpose for your existence. You're unique! You're special. Your life is significant. You're important and are not hidden from His sight!