Hagar – a young, gentile girl, far from her homeland, with no rights and no identity other than that as Sarah’s maid. Hagar – who obediently bore Abraham’s first child, whether she wanted to or not. Hagar – with few choices, except her attitude (and she did not choose well). Hagar – mistreated, frightened, alone, and pregnant.
She flees into the wilderness and God finds her there. She gives God a name – El Roi, “The God who sees”. She is amazed that the God of the universe cares about her. She is so changed by this encounter that she obeys the difficult command “Go back to your master.”
“I sought the Lord and He heard me and delivered me from all my fears.” Psalm 34:4
Approximately 15 years later she flees into the wilderness again. Again she despairs for her life and the life of her son. Again God sees her, provides for her, and offers her promises for the future.
“Before they call I will answer, and while they are speaking I will hear.” Isa 65:24
What a wonderful picture we have of El Roi – the God who sees us! The God who knows all our troubles and needs. The God who has a plan for our lives, plans for good and not harm.
“The eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him.” 2 Chron 16:9