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Monday, August 15, 2011

Where Are You Going?

Genesis 16:7-10 "The angel of the Lord found Hagar near a spring in the desert; it was the spring that is beside the road to Shur. And he said, 'Hagar, servant of Sarai, where have you come from, and where are you going?' 'I'm running away from my mistress Sarai,' she answered. Then the angel of the Lord told her, 'Go back to your mistress and submit to her.' The angel added, 'I will so increase your descendants that they will be too numerous to count.'"

Hagar was a victim of circumstance. Ancient custom stated that if a woman was childless, she could make her maid sleep with her husband and if they produced a child, legally it would belong to the wife. That is exactly what Sarai did to Hagar. Only she couldn't take it when Hagar became pregnant and she treated her like dirt. Hagar did the only thing she thought she could do....she ran. Next thing you know, she's wandering around alone in the desert and the scripture says the angel of the Lord found her.

I personally don't think the angel had to look too hard. He was the angel of the Lord after all and since God knows all, I think He just told the angel where to go get her. Then he did something I find interesting...he asked her a question: Where did you come from and where are you going? Once again, he already knew the answer - so why ask? Perhaps, he wanted Hagar to reassess her situation. She answered him readily to tell him where she came from. "I'm running from my mistress, Sarai." Note that she never says where she is going. Probably because she didn't know. She was wandering aimlessly in the desert, trying to run from her problems and she had absolutely no plan in mind.

I can only imagine how she felt...lost, lonely, betrayed, hurt. But in her pain, the Lord came to her and spoke to her. And after he had given her his message, she gave a name to the Lord. In verse 13 she says, "You are the God who sees me, " for she said, "I have now seen the One who sees me."

In her darkest hour, God saw her. He came to her and spoke to her and gave her direction. I have a feeling it was not the direction she was wanting or looking for. I doubt seriously she had any desire to return to Sarai, but that is where God sent her - to face her problems head on and make it through with His help.

Are you wandering in a desert today? Feeling lost, lonely, betrayed? Do you know what you are running from but not what you are running to? God sees you. He will come to you in your pain, and you can run to Him. He may not take you where you think you want to go, but He will take you on the road that is best for you. And on the journey, keep your eyes open - because you just may get to see Him, too.