Have you ever felt insignificant? Like people seem to look past you and never know you are there? There have been times in my life that I have felt invisible. Dismissed. Not good enough. Ignored. Disliked. Uncared for.
Remember Hagar? God had promised Abraham that He would bless him with descendants that outnumbered the stars in the sky. When a child didn’t come immediately, Sarah took matters into her own hands. The result was a child fathered by Abraham through Hagar. The Bible tells us that Hagar became embittered with Sarah because Sarah had used Hagar to get what she wanted. Ultimately, Sarah treated her so badly that Hagar fled into the wilderness.
Let’s pause here for a moment and look at a few things. First, imagine what Hagar must have been feeling. She had been used and disregarded. Has that ever happened to you? A friend or loved one uses you for the sole purpose of their own good? It’s not a warm feeling is it? Second, scripture doesn’t tell us just how far along Hagar is into her pregnancy. At any rate, she is in the wilderness…alone…maybe even feeling insignificant given the circumstances. But what happens next captures my heart.
The Angel of the Lord appeared to her and asked, “…where have you come from and where are you going?” Hagar says hat she is fleeing from Sarah. The Angel of the Lord tells her to return to Sarah and submit to her. He also said that He would make the number of her descendants too many to count. Her son would be called Ishmael. He also described Ishmael’s temperament and future. What Hagar says next is the most worshipful and meaning statement to me… “You are a God Who sees,” or “You are the Living One who sees me.” Can you imagine feeing insignificant and dismissed and suddenly having an encounter with your Creator that lets you know beyond any doubt that you are significant to Him?
I don’t have to imagine it…I know first hand. I remember the day. When His love for me became so personal it was overwhelming. I realized that God…loves…ME. He sees ME. I’m not just an abstract thought in His mind or a blip on His radar. He’s active in every moment of my life. Like Hagar, the encounter left me changed forever.
How glorious is our God!
Genesis 16 and Psalm 139