She [Hagar] gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her: “You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.” Genesis 16:13
Read: Genesis 16
Listen: Genesis 16
Hagar is on the run, and she needs help. As the result of a practice common in the ancient Near East (but utterly foreign to us), Hagar is pregnant with Abram’s son. Using Hagar as a surrogate, Abram and Sarai are attempting to get ahead of God. They take matters into their own hands rather than waiting and honoring the promise of God. Fleeing abusive behavior from her master Sarai, Hagar is headed back to her native Egypt. Abram and Sarai’s surprising lack of trust in God results in Hagar as the victim. It’s a significant problem, and God steps in to fix it.
As an exhausted Hagar seeks refreshment at a spring, she is approached by “the angel of the Lord.” It is God himself who tells this tired, fearful slave that from her will come “descendants…too numerous to count.” This unexpected intervention and amazing promise prompt her to give the name “El Roi” (“the God who sees me”) to the same God who established his covenant with Abram. God sees her when she needs him most.
We, too, depend on El Roi, the “God who sees us.” In fact, our lives would be filled with despair if God was unable or unwilling to see us. We need him to see our frustration, disappointment and fears. In seeing (as he did with Hagar), he responds with compassion as he reminds us of his great and precious promises. His “seeing” assures us that he knows, cares and responds as our loving Heavenly Father.
IN YOUR CHAIR TIME TODAY
Thank God that he does “see” you and uses what he sees to meet your needs. Journal what it means for you to know the God who “sees” and how this is an encouragement, no matter how exhausted you are this week.
Download a printable PDF of the BTW week here.