I left him there beside the road, where the dust fills the air and the wild Terebinth tree grows and expands.
I left them both there; I have no use for their lies and despised looks. I left them there.
Along with the only life I have known and now I wait beside the road side, my belly swollen and life undone. What am I waiting for? Salvation? Someone to save me, to set me free? I wait until I can wait no longer and I feel myself sinking to my knees in the dust beside the dead carcasses that litter the way. I am a slave; I know nothing of freedom, nothing of love, nothing of undiluted acceptance. Who am I?
I am Hagar, the slave of Sarah.
And here I wait until someone crosses to find me, a pregnant despised slave sitting beside the roadside, waiting on salvation. My tears fall; my eyes are wells of water that cannot be contained. The pain of years, the pain of confusion, and the pain of not having my own name can no longer be contained. I am a woman despised. Can no man see my pain, can no one see? Silence fills the roadway, no one is coming and I weep, rejected and alone.
I hear the crunch of sandaled feet and peer up desperate. Where do you come from? He asks me. “I am running away sir, from my mistress.”
“Go back to your mistress” He replies as He wipes my eyes, “go back and I will make you into a fruitful woman who will be mother of many descendants.”
“Who are you?” I ask.
He bends down and places His knees upon the dusty ground; He reaches out and touches my face. Something unexplainable fills my hungry soul and I peer into His eyes, He sees me. He sees ME. For the first time, somebody sees me.
His sad eyes give me something that understands - something that eases my wounded heart, balm from an unknown place that heals my wounds. He moves to leave but I cannot help myself as I grab His arm; “Sir, who are you?”
“You are pregnant with a son Hagar; you must name him Ishmael for God has heard about your pain and misery.”
My tears of desperation fall once more as I meet His sad eyes and feel life grow inside of me. “You are the One who sees me, I know You are God, I am not afraid, Sir You are El – Roi!” He has seen me and I have seen Him, a man of sorrow knowing pain – I can sense it, He knew my pain.
I gather what is left of my belongings, while I arise on weary feet. I have strength to make the journey; I have the strength to return. I turn to thank this stranger but He is gone. I turn to leave no longer a slave but a person, who God sees as me.