I can’t imagine living in the days of the Old Testament.
In our world of “rights” and “freedom,”
it’s difficult to read stories like the one of Hagar.
I’m not sure how she became part of Abram and Sarai’s story,
but here she is.
An Egyptian slave with no voice,
caught up in the drama of a couple who has been promised a son.
But decides to take the promise into their own hands.
Turning to the ways of the ancient world,
they do what many in their time did when a wife seemed infertile.
They made their own way for a child to enter their family.
And that way involved Hagar.
Time passes though.
And time has a way of making us second guess the very best of ideas.
Sarai gets jealous of the very woman she has placed in her husband’s hands.
And Hagar feels so desperate for safety
that she runs away.
I’m sure she cried out as she ran.
In a world where no one seemed to hear her voice,
did she truly believe someone was listening?
Her voice reached Heaven whether she believed it would or not.
And God appears on the scene….
And delivers a message we all long to hear,
“The Lord has heard your cry.”
He follows this powerful sentence with a form of confirmation she’ll never be able to forget.
“You will call him Ishmael.”
Having your child named by God had to feel incredibly special.
Realizing the name means “God hears” must have brought her to her knees.
Don’t we all want that reminder?
Every time she looked at her son or heard his name,
she would be reminded.
God hears me.
What could Hagar do in this moment to repay God for His mercy?
I love that she felt compelled to return the same kind of message to God
by also naming Him.
“So she named the Lord who spoke to her.”
“You are El-roi,” for she said,
“In this place, have I actually seen the One who sees me?”
El-Roi, The God Who Sees Me.
And the God who heard her and saw her said,
“Go back home. I will greatly multiply your offspring.”
The story of Abram is all about God’s covenant with His people.
A promise to be with them every step of the way.
But I love that Hagar received the same blessing.
I hear you.
I see you.
No matter where you feel you may be in your relationship with God today,
He’s right there.
And calling you home.