While it might be easy to envision that God sees the world, it is sometimes difficult to conceive that God sees us; that His eye is upon us. He is not only aware of our circumstance and has compassion for us, but he acts on our behalf. He has purposed our circumstances for our benefit and the praise of his glory. He is the God who sees you. He is the God who sees me.
He is the God Who Sees
13 The Lord looks down from heaven; he sees all the children of man; 14 from where he sits enthroned he looks out on all the inhabitants of the earth, 15 he who fashions the hearts of them all and observes all their deeds. 16 The king is not saved by his great army; a warrior is not delivered by his great strength. 17 The war horse is a false hope for salvation, and by its great might it cannot rescue. 18 Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him, on those who hope in his steadfast love, 19 that he may deliver their soul from death and keep them alive in famine. 20 Our soul waits for the Lord; he is our help and our shield. 21 For our heart is glad in him, because we trust in his holy name. 22 Let your steadfast love, O Lord, be upon us, even as we hope in you.
He is the God who sees.
The Psalmist takes us from the big picture oversight to the specific and to the personal. He gives us the overview: He looks down from heaven and sees all the children of man. He gets specific and speaks of the King and the warrior. And then he gets personal. His eye is on those who fear him and who hope in his steadfast love. He uses personal language; our, we, us. The eye of the Lord is upon us. Not only does God see us but he acts on our behalf. He is our rescuer and our deliverer – He is our help and our shield.
God sees us. He has eyes for us. He sees us in our affliction and distress. We have His attention. Do we see Him? Do we have eyes for Him? Can we recognize Him when He reveals himself to us? Does He have our attention?
The God who sees, sees you. The One who sees, sees me. The One who sees, saw Hagar.
Genesis 16 gives an account of Hagar and her personal encounter with the God who sees; the God who saw her.
Hagar was a servant given by Sarai to her husband, Abram as way of “helping” God fulfill His promise of an heir. Hagar found herself pregnant, mistreated, miserable and hopeless. When Hagar could take no more she ran away.
The Angel of the Lord finds her in the wilderness. He speaks her name and knows her status as a servant of Sarai. He asks her questions. He listens to her words and hears the cries of her heart. And then he tells her she must return to her mistress and submit to her.
The Lord did not promise to rescue Hagar out of her circumstances. He did not condemn her oppressors. He did not bring punishment on those who treated her poorly. He called her to a hard thing. He made himself known to her in the midst of her circumstances. She knew at that moment that she was not alone and that The God who sees, saw her and was caring for her. He gave her a glimpse of the future and strengthened her for the path he laid out for her. His eye was upon her. She had confidence in Him.
The Lord had Hagar’s attention. She had eyes for him. She recognized her messenger as God and gave him the name, a God of Seeing. Her words, “Truly I have seen him who looks after me.” reveal her confidence and hope in the Lord. She named the well Beer-lahai-roi (a well of the living one Who Sees Me).
Hagar had the promise of God’s eye upon her. She submitted to the counsel of the Lord and returned to Sarai. The Lord saw; the Lord listened; the Lord acted on Hagar’s behalf.
The Lord see; the Lord listens; the Lord acts on our behalf.
While none of us are servants or slaves in a Biblical narrative, we too, have the faithful eye of the Lord upon us. He is not unaware of our circumstances. He is a God who is near and not a God who is far off (Jer. 23:23). He knows our name and has promised to be with us wherever we go and protect us in all circumstances (Is.43:1-3, Josh 1:9). He cares for us (1 Peter 5:7). His is grace is sufficient for us and His power is made perfect in our weakness (2 Cor. 12:9).
It might make sense, in human terms, to imagine that God sees the “important” people of this world but overlooks the average, invisible nobodies such as ourselves. But Jesus ministry tells us a different story. He sought out and ministered to the poor, the needy, the scorned, the insignificant, the abused, the afflicted and the marginalized; the woman at the well, the woman with the issue of blood, the woman caught in adultery, the crazy guy in the tombs, the blind, the sick and the lepers. He saw them. He knew their circumstances. He knew their names. He acted on their behalf.
Know this: He is the God who sees. He is the God who sees you. He is the God who sees me.
He is the God who sees.