You Don't Want Hagar
by Pastor Chris Williamson
Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had borne him no children. She had a female Egyptian servant whose name was Hagar. And Sarai said to Abram, “Behold now, the LORD has prevented me from bearing children. Go into my servant; it may be that I shall obtain children by her.” And Abram listened to the voice of Sarai. So after Abram had lived ten years in the land of Canaan, Sarai, Abram’s wife, took the Egyptian, her servant, and gave her to Abram her husband as a wife. Genesis 16:1-3
Waiting on God is one of the hardest things to do in life. We often pace in front of the microwave, lose our tempers in stalled traffic, and get upset when our computers operate slowly. We have become so spoiled that when we don’t get what we want when we want it, we begin to question God’s concern for us. We complain to others about having to wait on God, but the truth is, God is waiting on us.
God uses waiting to develop our faith, patience, and perseverance. Whether it’s a house, a spouse, a job, direction, a healing, or some kind of financial provision, we’re all waiting on God for something. Waiting on God reveals our spiritual depth or lack thereof. While waiting, there is often the temptation to insert our plan into the process and this proves to always be detrimental to our lives. The patriarch Abraham unfortunately experienced this mishap.
At the age of seventy-five, God called Abraham to be the father of a great nation (Genesis 12:1-3). The only problem was that he and his wife Sarah could not have children. So after ten years of waiting on God for this promised child to come, Abraham came up with a bright idea to make the steward of his house his heir. However, God stepped in and vetoed that plan (Genesis 15:1-4).
A little later, a frustrated Sarah offered her handmaid Hagar to Abraham to be his wife and to bear a child through. Without asking God for His input on this plan, Abraham acted foolishly and went into Hagar, having a son by her named Ishmael. I believe Abraham didn’t pray about this option because He knew what God would have said “No” to this plan, as well. Nevertheless, this man-made plan backfired in Abraham and Sarah’s faces. In fact, that moment of impatience sank the descendants of Ishmael and Isaac into a bitter conflict that still persists to this day, and affects all of us around the world.
Application for Life
We must learn not to settle for Hagar. Hagar is not God’s choice. Hagar is our choice. Choosing Hagar is our way of solving a problem but it ends up creating more problems. Hagar is our idea. She is never God’s idea. Had Abraham talked to God about the matter he would have been spared much upheaval. Hagar comes as the result of leaning too heavily upon our own understanding and not enough upon God and His ability to provide. Grabbing Hagar is our way of “helping God out”, but God doesn’t need our help.
In the midst of your waiting period, identify the potential “Hagar” that is out there and stay away. Hagar could be a woman or a man you are not supposed to be with. Hagar could be a business decision or a ministry option. Hagar looks good but she’s not good. Hagar makes human sense (initially) but not godly sense. Therefore, seek God’s will, wait on Him, and stay away from Hagar. If you think waiting on God is hard, think again. Wishing you would have waited is harder.
You don’t want Hagar. You want what God has for you. Wait on the Lord and be of good courage.
POSTED: March 26, 2014