If you know me at all, you know that one of my favorite stories in Scripture is that of Hagar. The story of Hagar is one of those revelations that has hit me hard, brought me to my knees, and made the tears overflow. I guess it’s because I see myself in Hagar, I have felt her desperation; I have cried her tears of loneliness and pain.
There was a time in my life when I felt disposable. I felt I had lost my value to those around me. My existence was no longer wanted nor convenient to those close to me. It was a lonely existence. I think there are times in all of our lives when we begin to feel like maybe we are not as valuable as we thought, maybe even hoped, we were. Our contributions to family, society, the office, church, or friendships seems to never be enough. Perhaps we even feel cast out into a place of desolation, a place where hope and remedy seem lost.
That’s where Hagar was in Genesis 16. Her existence became inconvenient and troublesome to Sarah, and Hagar felt every bit of her disdain. In her desperation, Hagar flees to the only place that felt safer, the only place where she could have relief, out in a desolate wilderness. A place of desolation and isolation seemed a better solution than to remain in the presence of her oppressor. It is in these moments of rejection, trauma, and pain that Hagar finds herself more alone than ever. AND THEN GOD…
When Hagar is most desperate the Lord comes looking for her. He does not wait for her to call on Him, He runs to find her. He provides her comfort and a mission. With the Lord, she has purpose, she has value. She is not disposable, but necessary to God’s plan. In this moment of being seen, Hagar gives a name to the Lord. She is the only woman ever to name the Lord and this is what she calls him, “El-Roi”-The God Who Sees Me. It is in the most desperate of moments, when she needed to be seen the most, that God came running. He saw her in her pain, in her isolation, in her rejection, and gave her purpose.
Have you ever felt without purpose? Have you ever felt disposable? Have you felt like you’ve lost your value? I have. Just remember that it is in those moments God comes running. He sees you. He hears your cries. He knows your pain and he will not abandon you. He has a purpose for you, and He is ready to show you just what you were made for. You are worth seeing.