Saturday, May 7, 2011

El Roi

El Roi is one of the ways the Bible refers to God.  We can read about El Roi in Genesis 16.  Its the story of Hagar, an Egyptian slave to Sarai and Abram, that encounters God as El Roi.  Isn't it interesting the God chooses to reveal this part of His character to her?  An Egyptian (not a chosen one of God), a slave, someone who has been treated wrongfully by someone whom we later find has found such favor with God.  Strange.

Hagar meets God at a well and it is there that He reveals Himself as The God Who Sees.  The omnipresent one.  The one who knows everything, both the good and the bad.  And watches everything, both the good and the bad.  Proverbs 15:3 says:

"The eyes of the Lord are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good."

This can be such a puzzling statement.  If God's eyes are really in every place, if He really does see both the good and the evil that happens in this world daily then why is it that bad things still happen to people by the hand of another?  Why is it that people are abused and mistreated by others?  If God sees it and allows it to happen, how can he really be good?

These are some of the hardest questions to answer.  I've been trying to find answers for these kinds of questions lately.  I've been feeling the pain of some close friends and family members lately who are really and truly suffering.  I knew that I needed to find an answer for them just in case one of them asked the question.

I'm reading a book recommended to me by my dear friend Beckie.  Its called Lord I Want to Know You by Kay Arthur.  Through this book, I'm learning all about the different names of God, how each of these names reveals His character, and how to grow closer to God by knowing who He really is.  It was in this book that I first learned about God as El Roi.  Arthur asks "How can any abused person, any person used for another's perverted pleasure ever be whole?  Whether abuse is sexual, mental, or physical, can there be healing?"  She answers "Yes, healing has to be possible.  Otherwise, a sovereign God of love would surely have intervened." (page 32)

I know plenty of people who are still waiting on some healing.  I know that although I have never been abused in the sense that many of these other people have, at times I'm still waiting on healing too.  It is a comfort to me to remember that as scripture says, God is sovereign.  He has a plan.  He sees everything.  He will intervene or bring healing no matter what suffering lies ahead for my life and for the lives of my friends who know Him. 

"Thus says your Lord, the LORD, your God who pleads the cause of his people:
'Behold, I have taken from your hand the cup of staggering;
the bowl of my wrath you shall drink no more;
and I will put it into the hand of your tormentors'"
Isaiah 51:22-23

"He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds."
Psalm 147:3

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