Have you ever felt like such a small piece of this world that you don’t really matter, that God doesn’t care or even know what is going on in your life?
Genesis 16 tells the story of Hagar, an Egyptian slave girl for Sarai who was getting old and had no child. Her husband Abram had received a promise from God for many descendants, but Sarai had begun to question if she was part of that plan. She devised her own plan to help Abram get the child that God had promised him, and an integral part of her plan was Hagar. Sarai convinced Abram to have a child by Hagar. Because she was owned by Sarai, the child would be Sarai’s as well, and then they could build the family they both so badly desired. Abram agreed to this plan, so Sarai gave Hagar to him as a wife. I have to wonder if Hagar had any choice in this plan of Sarai’s.
As a servant, I’m sure Hagar felt very unimportant and unseen. She was “just a slave girl”. But when she became pregnant, that attitude changed. Hagar grew to feel more important than her mistress because she was able to accomplish the one thing that Sarai couldn’t – give Abram the son and many descendants that God had promised.
Sarai became frustrated with this attitude and probably felt jealous and even bitter as weeks passed. According to law, Sarai had every right to remove Hagar as Abram’s wife and return her to her status as a slave for taking advantage of this situation, but it is unclear if that happened. What is clear, is that eventually Sarai’s frustration turned to such harsh treatment that Hagar ran away.
Hagar was wrong to run away from her duties. She had made a bad decision, and now she was alone and probably scared. I’m sure she felt angry at the way she was treated, even though she made some mistakes as well as Sarai and Abram. She was probably frightened at the thought of a future alone with a child. She may have felt frustrated with Sarai’s entire plan. You know those pregnancy hormones had her emotions all over the place!
Then an angel of the Lord appeared to her and directed her to return to Sarai and submit to her authority. The angel assured Hagar that the Lord saw her and knew about her misery. He knew all that was going on in her life, and even though she made a mistake by running away, God had not forsaken her. He truly cared about her. Genesis 16:13 says, “She called the Lord who spoke to her: The God Who sees me.” He knew her struggles and her fears, and He confirmed her value. She was more than just a pregnant slave girl, and despite Sarai’s plan, God had a plan for Hagar.
If you feel alone in your circumstances, know that God knows all that has happened, and He knows your future. He sees you, He loves you, and He has a plan.
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