Friday, December 7, 2018

Our God Does More Than Just See

Hey Friend,

Like Hagar, I take comfort in knowing that God is "El Roi" - the God who sees me.

We ALL long to be seen and to be known by an Omniscient God.  But, is there more?

I think back to the story of Abraham who has been commanded, by God, to take his only son Isaac (the one for whom he waited long into his senior years) up the mountain to sacrifice him there.

I put myself in Abraham's shoes.  I have been obedient and righteous in my actions before God.  I have followed His commands, and now I hold my son's hand in my right hand and my servant carries wood for the sacrificial altar on which I will place my precious little boy.  Oh the angst I am feeling.  Why would God ask me to kill that for which I've waited all my life?

I see the terrified look in my son's eyes as I tie him up and place him on the wood pile on the altar.  I pull out my knife to slit my own son's throat, and God speaks. 

"Abraham! Abraham! Do not lay a hand on the boy," He says, "Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you fear God, because you have not withheld from me your son, your only son." (Genesis 22: 11-12)

God sees me. He sees Abraham; and not only does God see, but He sees to it.

Just then, a ram is caught in a thicket offering.  God sees Abraham's obedience and He PROVIDES an answer.  God provided the sacrifice that would save Isaac.

Fast forward and Abraham's descendant's, the Israelites, have continually made covenants with God and have continually broken them.  No sooner do they repent, vow to not make those same mistakes again, then they are back to worshiping other Gods and engaging in all sorts of sinful behavior.

God saw the predicament man was in.  He saw and He knew that there was no way we could keep the Law - the covenant of the Old Testament.  He saw and then He saw to it.

Unlike Abraham's obedience, God sees our disobedience.  He sees our propensity for sin and that we do what we don't want to do, and we don't do what we want to do.  Our predicament is without hope.

Once again, God not only sees, but He provides. 

He sends His only beloved Son to earth, wrapped in human skin, so that Jesus might live and walk among us and know what it's like to be fully human while still being fully God.  

God also knew what would have to happen to His only Son.  Unlike Isaac who was spared, He knew that Jesus would have to be the sacrificial lamb.  Christ would be God's provision for our sins.  

What an awesome God who not only sees, but provides a way for us.

This Christmas season, perhaps a loved one has passed away and there is an ache in your heart and the merriment is salt in the wound.

God sees you and He will provide you with His comfort...I will not leave you comfortless; I will come to you. (John 14:18)

Maybe your spouse has left and you are feeling abandoned, alone, like a failure, and unloved.

God sees you and He will provide you with your identity in Him. He will catch every tear that falls upon your pillow...You keep track of all my sorrows.
      You have collected all my tears in your bottle.
      You have recorded each one in your book. (Psalm 56:8)

Perhaps your child is walking a prodigal path that is far from the path you have shown him/her to walk.  Your heart aches at the destructive choices they make.

God sees you and He will provide you a place of comfort and peace beneath the refuge of His wings...How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! And the children of men take refuge in the shadow of Your wings. (Psalm 36:7)

God sees and He will provide: love, mercy, grace that is sufficient, forgiveness, compassion, peace in the face of worry, trust where there is doubt, kindness, goodness....

Whatever it is that you need, God will provide, because He is our good, good Father who does more than just see.  Take heart.  Take hope.  Let Him take you into His arms so that you may hear His beating heart of love for you....His beloved. For you He will provide.

Dear Heavenly Father,  I praise you and thank you that you see me and that I am fully known, and fully loved by you.  Thank you that you provided the answer for my sin.  When I couldn't save myself, you gave me a Savior.  Lord, you know where my heart is hurting and the cracks that need filling in my soul.  I claim your promise to provide whatever I need in my circumstances - be it love, grace, mercy, forgiveness, peace, or a combination of your good gifts. Let me lean into you, knowing you will see to what I need.  Enable me to rely and depend on you.  Help me to know you more intimately this Advent season.  In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

Be blessed...