January 6, 2020

Bryan Hoke – Bishop, Atlantic Conference

Bible meditation: Genesis 16:1-16

Hagar really had no choice. Every day, she served her master, for months, years. Then, something more was required: a demand to give of herself in a new way, as surrogate — making her offspring heir.

The result? In this passage, we see Hagar and her unborn child on the run. Amid the situation’s extreme brokenness, Hagar encounters God. She sees the One who also sees her, becoming the unlikely first person in Scripture to name God: “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’” (Gen. 16:13).

Her vision now clear, she follows what God instructs her to do, to return home. When we see and are seen by God, we can do what otherwise would be impossible. We can go in a different direction or endure formerly unbearable circumstances. We are given fresh eyes to experience the God who has been there all along. We become grounded in our true identity. And we discover God gives us strength to fulfill all that he asks. In your life and mine, where do we need to see God and hear his perspective on who we really are? In what ways should the recognition that we are seen by God propel us forward or even in the opposite direction?


Father, enable us to see ourselves more clearly as we see you. As we do, may we follow that fresh vision, doing what was impossible on our own.