A wrong turn down a 25 mile dirt road on our way to a secluded national park left me and my kids alone in the middle of the desert, miles from any signs of life. What was Lola (my GPS) thinking? She tried to get us back on track, but suddenly I was faced with crossing a dry river bed to continue on the dirt road on the other side. But hey, I’m adventurous and have four-wheel drive. It was only about a hundred yards across, so why not? Besides, there was no easy way to turn around and go back the other way on the rutted road.
Halfway through, I realized I had made a terrible mistake. The car was slogging through two feet of dry sand, gradually slowing down. If the car stopped, we would never gain enough momentum to get going again. My kids and I frequently travel alone and I’ve never been fearful, but this time I was afraid. I desperately pleaded with God to give us enough momentum to keep the wheels turning and get to the other side. He graciously granted my petition and we made it across and continued on our way.
This experience reminded me of another woman stuck in a desert 4,000 years ago. Hagar was a young woman in desperate circumstances not of her own choosing. She ran away and found herself scared and alone by a spring in the desert.
BUT GOD… met her in that place.
He comforted her with words conveying these thoughts: “I see you. I know how you got here and I know where you’re going. I care about you and I have a plan for you.” After he told her what to do, Hagar gave him a new name because she had experienced him in a new way: El Roi…the God who sees me.
Friends, there is a new generation of women in our churches and in our cities who are walking alone in their faith journey and need to know that…
there is a God who sees them and loves them.
They need to know that their church loves them and values them and that there is a place for them in the body of Christ. They need to know that, even though their family may not look like a traditional two-parent church-going family, there is a place for them to connect and build community and grow in their spiritual walk. They need support and mentoring to learn how to gracefully navigate the desperate trials they are facing.
Look around you. Who do you know that is desperate and alone in a desert? Who needs to know that there is God who sees her, who loves her, and who has not abandoned her?
May El Roi (el raw-ee), the God who sees, give you His eyes to see those who are hurting so you can encourage them this week.