Have you ever felt unseen?
Let me explain that some more.
Have you ever had to endure the hurt caused by someone else’s mistake? If so, did you feel like no one knew you were hurting? Maybe you even felt abandoned by people you thought you could count on to care for you. Perhaps you just felt alone.
I know that is a bit heavy to start out with and perhaps these questions trigger a painful part of your story. But, I believe we have to acknowledge the bad so we can truly receive the good. And here is something good, friend, that I want you to know today:
God is good…even when others are not.
Last week you were introduced to Sarah, the wife of Abraham from Genesis, who was promised by God to be the mother of many nations. However, the fulfillment of that promise took a lot longer than Sarah had hoped it would, which led her to take matters into her own hands, and in doing so she made life a lot harder for someone else.
Hagar was Sarah’s servant. However, Sarah’s mistake, as we will learn, causes this humble handmaid to become a pregnant fugitive.
The story is like a modern-day soap opera. Sarah, impatient with waiting on God to provide the child He promised, gives her servant to her husband Abraham with the hopes of producing an heir. Hagar indeed conceives while Sarah remains childless. Faced with the reality of her pregnant servant, as well as Hagar’s newfound resentment toward her, Sarah knew she could not continue living like this. Abraham releases Hagar into Sarah’s control to do with her as she pleases. Sarah mistreats Hagar, so Hagar runs away. She heads toward the desert and she is found by an angel of the LORD near a well. God sees her, values her, and promises to increase the number of her descendants through the son that she now carries. In turn, Hagar experiences God’s goodness. Here is a little snapshot of the scene:
[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
Let’s pause a moment to concentrate on God’s goodness here. Last week, with Sarah, we talked about how God’s goodness can be experienced even in the waiting. But here, in Hagar’s story, we are introduced to the God who sees. No matter the cause of our distress – our own sin or the sin of someone else – God is a good god.
Hagar’s God, ‘The God Who Sees’, is the same God Who Sees You and Me.
Hagar calls God, “the God who sees me.” What a powerfully comforting and reassuring name. Remember at the beginning when I asked if you had ever felt unseen? Maybe you haven’t felt understood by family or friends; maybe you live with an inattentive spouse; maybe you feel discouraged that no one will ever see beyond your failures and sins.
The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing. Zephaniah 3:17
Friend, I want you to know today God sees you. He is waiting with open arms of grace to forgive you of your mistakes, even when you have doubted His goodness. He knows what has been done to you and longs to comfort you in your suffering and give you hope and a better future. He delights in you. Will you join me in choosing to trust today that God indeed sees you and longs to show you His goodness? I am ready if you are!
Reclaiming Truth Together,