Wednesday, February 13, 2013
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Nantucket—a romantic island off the coast of Massachusetts. Waterbrook—a humble cabin in the woods in the mountains north of New York City. Long Beach Island—a little house by the Jersey shore. See, those are places where my wife has been her most beautiful. That’s not because she had new makeup on, or was all dressed up, or did her hair differently. Those are just some places where we’ve gone to be alone, and where I finally slowed down and noticed her again. She’s beautiful all the time, but I don’t notice it all the time, because I see her best when we’re alone. If you’re in a lonely time right now, let’s talk.
I’m Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Just the Two of Us."
Our word for today from the Word of God comes from Genesis 16:7. It tells the story of a young woman named Hagar. Maybe you remember that Abraham and Sarah got impatient for God to send the son that He had promised, and Sarah was getting older and older. The baby didn't come, so Sarah, going along with the customs of that day, suggested that Abraham sleep with Hagar, her maidservant, and then Hagar would be the surrogate mother through whom a child would come. They couldn't wait for God to do it His way, so they had to figure out a way they were going to do it. It's not how God wanted it done, and after Hagar gets pregnant, Sarah gets a little jealous. And Hagar gets a little caustic about it.
Now we find her out in the desert all alone because guess what? She's been driven there by her mistress, Sarah. Here she is used, rejected, deserted, she's pregnant, she's alone in the desert, she's the picture of abandonment; all alone, or so she thinks.
Genesis 16:7, "The angel of the Lord found Hagar near a spring in the desert. The angel of the Lord said to her, ‘You are now with child and you will have a son. You shall name him Ishmael, for the Lord has heard of your misery.'" He goes on to describe some of what to expect from this son, and then 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.' That's why the well is called Beer Lahai Roi." Which, by the way, means "the well of the Living One who sees me."
It's interesting the name of God here, "I have seen the One who sees me." Maybe right now you're in the desert; it's a very lonely desert. God sees you in your loneliness, and He has heard your tears. The broken relationship, the lost loved one, the years of living alone, the collapse of your family; God sees you. Do you see Him? She said, "I have now seen the One who has been seeing me." When no one sees, when no one knows, when no one understands, Ishmael. You know what that name means? God hears. God hears.
And guess where we tend to see God best? Yeah, in the deserts of our lives. Not until we are stripped of all the other supports in our life, that's when Hagar finally saw the God who had been seeing her all along. That's when we see Him. That's when you dig deep into His resources; you see what He can do. You feel His love, and you let His love be enough. Paul said, "When everybody had abandoned him" (2 Timothy 4:17), "the Lord stood by my side."
I told you when I noticed my wife's beauty and wisdom the most-when there was no one else around. Well, it's the same in a relationship with the Lord Jesus. When it's just the two of you, maybe like it is right now, you can see Him as you've never seen Him before.