Written by: Sarah Walker
Have you ever wondered if the God of the universe is really watching you? Of course I know that the Holy Spirit is with me all the time, but there is something different, something humbling about the thought that God the Father watching over me from above.
I spent some of my week researching this topic, and as I did, I found verse after verse that says God watches over us!
The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and His ears are attentive to their cry. (Psalm34:15)
In all my study, it was the story of Hagar that struck me the most! (Genesis 16)
Hagar was an Egyptian slave to Abraham’s wife, Sarah. While Sarah was struggling in her infertility, she decided to give her slave (Hagar) to Abraham as a “wife,” so that Hagar would conceive and so Sarah could give her husband a son in some way. It sounds awful, but was a common practice at the time.
As a wife, I can’t imagine giving my husband another woman, in the hopes that she can give him something that I can’t! I would no doubt be filled with feelings of jealousy and insecurity, to say the least.
As the story unfolds, we find that Hagar becomes pregnant and begins to resent her master, Sarah. Sarah runs to her husband for guidance on what to do. Abraham tells her, “Your slave is in your hands, do with her whatever you think best.”
Even though Hagar was given as a “wife”, Abraham does not address her with terms of endearment – he coldly addresses her as a slave. Abraham and Sarah have just used her as their slave. It’s no wonder that Hagar begins to have feelings of resentment towards Abraham and Sarah!
Through Sarah’s hurt feelings, she decided that mistreating Hagar is the way to handle the problem that she has created for herself.
Yikes! Hagar has had enough. She runs away from home.
Now here is the where the story gets ever more interesting!
An angel of the Lord finds Hagar on the run, and blesses her and her baby! She is just a slave. She is a nobody, and yet God comes to comfort her in her trial and brings blessing to her and her unborn son! Hagar is then recorded as the first person in the Bible to give God a name: “the God who sees me.”
The angel of the Lord also tells Hagar to go back home and submit to Sarah. God sees her, comforts her, blesses her – but also tells her to go back to the place where is a slave, despised by her mistress and used by her master.
What an amazing woman of faith! She was wronged, she was hurting and scared, but when God told her she had to go back to where she was being mistreated, she went! She knew that “the God who sees” was watching her, and because of that, she had the faith to return to her bad circumstances.
Isn’t God incredible! He watches over everyone, regardless of their age, race or social status. He comforts us, he blesses us and gives us the peace and strength to work through our struggles.
The Lord gives strength to his people; the Lord blesses his people with peace. (Psalm 29:11)