Whether you are a single parent due to a divorce, infidelity, a one-night-stand, or death, God has a plan for you and your children! God sees you in your moments of trying to do it all, and He chooses to reach out to you personally in the darkest moments. Have hope; you are not alone!
In Genesis, an amazing moment happens that so many miss. God is given his first recorded intimate name. This name is given to God during a dramatic encounter with a single mother, Hagar.
She calls him Beer-lahai-roi, the One Who Sees Me.
For those who have not heard the story of Hagar, allow me to set the scene. First, let's begin with Sarai and Abram. In Genesis chapter 15, God begins to speak to Abram. He promises Abram a great inheritance that would last for generations to come. This causes an immediate agitation in Abram as he has no children of his own. The true problem is Sarai (Abram's wife) is already past childbearing age. Many assume she is well past 80 years old. Abram and Sarai eventually become frustrated after waiting so long for the heir they were promised in Genesis 15:4. Sarai offers Abram her maidservant, Hagar, to have a child with. This is where it gets a little crazy for everyone involved! Hagar becomes pregnant with a child, Ishmael. However, all is not well in the home of Abram and Sarai!
The Bible records this moment of when everything begins to fall apart.
When she knew she was pregnant, she began to despise her mistress. Then Sarai said to Abram, "You are responsible for the wrong I am suffering. I put my slave in your arms, and now that she knows she is pregnant, she despises me. May the Lord judge between you and me.”Your slave is in your hands," Abram said. "Do with her whatever you think best." Then Sarai mistreated Hagar; so she fled from her.
However traumatic this may all have been, this is not the moment of impact. Hagar is now fleeing from Sarai and met unexpectedly by the Lord.
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, slave 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 increase your descendants so much that they will be too numerous to count.”
Hagar is so moved by this entire experience that she gives God his first recorded intimate name, "The God who sees me"!
Genesis 16: 13- She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her: “You are Beer Lahai Roi, the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.”
So what does a maidservant in Genesis have to do with me?
The story of Hagar is one of hope despite all odds! It is clear Hagar did not desire to be a mother without the emotional support she needed. At a time that should have been blessed, the birth of a child, there was much turmoil. The jealousy of Sarai, the guilt of Abram, the shame of being a mother and not a wife, all were a part of Hagar's emotions.
Here's what we can gather from Hagar's encounter.
1.) God has a plan for your child.
It is clear that God sought after Hagar. Although God promised a child to Abram and Sarai, He spared no love to Hagar and her unborn child. He does not show favorites. His plan is no less for a child whether they grow up in a stereotypical home or not. In fact, the Lord speaks to Hagar and makes it clear that He will make a "great nation" out of her unborn child. God spares nothing for His children.
2.) DESPITE it all, God is here to help you on your journey.
It did not catch God off guard that Hagar was experiencing such turmoil. Hagar was truly neglected and rejected, but it was not unseen. God met her where she was and spoke to her. He gave her hope DESPITE. God can give you hope DESPITE a failed marriage. DESPITE an absent father for your child. Despite it all...He says....I see YOU!
Many single mothers are faced with so much shame and sadness because they are doing alone. However, I would like to remind you of Hagar. You are NOT doing it alone. He sees you! He is there to help you and give you the resources you need for successful parenting!
3.) God desires an intimate relationship with you!
Hagar understood the gravity of the moment when she met with the Lord. To some, she may not have seemed like one who was deserving of such attention. But to God, SHE MATTERED. I believe Hagar felt this love during her encounter and this is why she gave God such an intimate name "The one who sees me".
Have you ever felt like you were not being seen? As you raise your children, maybe even alone or with little support..how do you reconcile with feeling alone?
The truth is...you NEVER were alone. The Bible says "He will never leave you or forsake you". Although people may disappoint and not hold on to their end of the bargain, God will never leave you alone.
From your pregnancy until now...God has great plans for you and your child. Although your circumstances may not be what you expected, they are not too much for the God who sees you! The question is how will you respond to His presence?
Will you respond like Hagar, or will you choose to keep running from the One who sees you where you are?
Victory Verses for Parenting
Psalm 127:3 Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him.
Isaiah 40:31- But those who trust in the Lord for help will find their strength renewed. They will rise on wings like eagles; they will run and not get weary; they will walk and not grow weak
Matthew 11:28-Come to me, all of you who are tired from carrying heavy loads, and I will give you rest.
Proverbs 3:5-6-Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Never rely on what you think you know. Remember the Lord in everything you do, and he will show you the right way.
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