OUR LORD WHO SEES US
In the book of Genesis chapter 16, the story of Abram, Sarai and Hagar is told.
Sarai, Abram's wife, had offered Hagar, her maid, to Abram to be a surrogate mother so that he could have a son because she herself could not bear children.
When Hagar conceived, she felt elevated in the household and showed contempt for Sarai.
Sarai, already on an emotional knife-edge because of the delicate arrangement she brokered, was angered towards Hagar and treated her harshly.
Hagar, in the face of Sarai's wrath, fled the homestead and was now stranded in the wilderness unable to go forward into the inhospitable wasteland and unwilling to turn back.
While there, she encountered the Angel of the Lord ( who is the pre-incarnate Jesus ) and verse 7 to 8 records the discussion between them.
And the angel of the LORD found her by a fountain of water in the wilderness, by the fountain in the way to Shur. And he said, Hagar, Sarai's maid, whence camest thou? and whither wilt thou go? And she said, I flee from the face of my mistress Sarai. And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Return to thy mistress, and submit thyself under her hands.
Hagar was deeply moved by the visitation of the Lord and she gave God a name that encapsulates one of the most profound responses to God's presence ever captured. She named God , "El Roi" which means, the God who sees me.
Genesis 16 verse 13 goes thus:
She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her: “You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.”
Hagar, having despaired under harsh conditions to the point that she tried to escape but having no where to escape to, had reached an existential impasse and in her desperation, felt like a disposable nobody.
It was here, at a jump off point into the abyss, that the Lord met with her and comforted her and counseled her.
She was suddenly aware of a God who knew her past, her present condition and her future. A God who made her relevant and valuable. The abrupt realization that she was in the sights of the eternal God brought her to the place of exclaiming, "You are the God who sees me".
Bless the Lord.