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  • Feb24Fri

    Hope For the In Between

    February 24, 2017 by TWR Canada Women's Ministry Team
    Filed Under:
    Devotional, Women of the Bible
    When life gets hard, we can lose sight of hope. When things look impossible, when there’s no change on the horizon, no daylight in an endless dark tunnel, we plod and lament – God, do you see me? We all have seasons like this. The relationships in our lives can keep us going or sometimes drag us down.

    But we are never without hope, and hope changes everything.

    Hagar was asked to return to a hard situation…

    Hagar (Genesis 16) was a woman asked by God to return to an impossibly difficult situation. When we meet Hagar, an Egyptian servant to Sarai, she has been given to Abram (later Abraham) as a second wife and is now pregnant. She runs away because life at home becomes unbearable for her.

    An angel finds her at a well between cities and asks her to go back to a humiliating, miserable, and intolerable situation, but gives her a promise that restores and renews and sustains her hope. It’s easy to miss that part of the story.

    The angel promises Hagar she will bear a son, that her descendants will be too numerous to count, and that the boy “will be a wild donkey of a man.” There’s a lot of hope in this promise; let’s unpack it.

    Hagar is promised a son. This is important because sons looked after their parents as they aged. Hagar knew she couldn’t rely on Abram to take care of her, but God has provided for her by giving her a son. She is promised a legacy and many descendants so not only would she and her child survive this season, their line would later flourish and multiply.

    The angel promises her son will be a wild donkey of a man. This seems like an odd promise, but how much do you know about donkeys? One of our staff grew up on farms and she remembers as a child seeing a donkey tethered to a cow, a large Charolais yearling. “That poor donkey,” she said.

    Her father laughed. “Don’t ever feel sorry for the donkey.”

    Her father showed her that even though the cow was physically larger than the donkey, the cow obediently followed the donkey around the pasture without ever letting the rope grow taut. Some farmers still teach cattle to lead by tying a rope from the cow’s halter to a saddle on the donkey. After two or three days, even full grown cows can be taught to lead this way and neither animal is injured. (These are specially trained donkeys.)

    The donkey won’t give up, it keeps tugging and pulling on the cow to go its own direction. The donkey wears down the cow’s will until out of sheer exhaustion it learns to follow.

    Do you see the hope God was promising a servant girl being asking to return to a hard and difficult season? Hagar was given a future, and the hope of a son who would be his own man and the father of a nation. Ishmael would be stubborn, solitary, willful, and at odds with almost everyone around him, but he would also be intelligent, persistent, work hard, leave an enduring legacy, and never be a servant. Hagar was promised a reward that made returning to the current situation bearable.

    The God Who Sees Me

    Hagar says, “You are a God who sees” Genesis 16:14 (NASB). God had seen her and provided hope for a hard season.

    Whatever season your relationships are facing right now, know that the same God who saw a pregnant runaway weeping in the wilderness sees you. You might be asked to stay or return to a difficult situation, as Hagar was, but you have a hope that will sustain you if you hold on to it.

    February 28: Pray for Christian women to know that God has a purpose and plan for them and that he is at work in their lives even when they are struggling and feel defeated. “Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6).  

    40 Days Of Prayer And Fasting Begins March 1, 2017

    Join us for our annual 40 days of prayer and fasting! March 1 to April 9 is our time of dedicated prayer and rotational fasting. We invite you to pray and/or fast as you are able. You may wish to pray through previous calendars. You might choose to fast a day a week, or fast for one meal or from a particular food or activity. There is no right or wrong way. Ask the Lord what he would have you do!
    Additionally, March 8 is International Women’s Day; consider setting it aside for a dedicated time of prayer. Regardless of how you choose to join in this time, know that we are grateful for your efforts. We serve a great God, one who delights in the prayers of his people.