Distant. Uncaring. Unaware.

This is how many people who believe in, but don’t really know, our great God describe Him. These words could not be further from the truth. Our God is a God who truly sees us in our weakest, and strongest, moments.

One sweltering day, our God met a young woman in her greatest time of need. She was a slave - abused physically, mentally, and emotionally. She had become pregnant and had no one to turn to in her agony. As she ran from her place of torment, she found herself in a wild desert. Hungry, tired, and thirsty, she collapsed by a small spring of water and assumed this would be the place she would die. As terrible as this situation was, returning seemed a worse fate – and to top it off, no one would care that she died. It was here, in her hour of deepest despair, our Heavenly Father Himself came to Hagar and comforted her with a promise of a future. (Genesis 16)

It was during this encounter that God was given a name. El Roi - The God Who Sees Me. No where else in Scripture does a human give God a name. No man, no prophet, no spiritual leader; it was only a woman, a slave, an Egyptian, a woman who would bear a son whose descendants would plague God’s people to modern day. Yet, God met her in her desperation, and she is granted the honor of giving God a name as she melted in His presence. She named Him from a description of a very important aspect of our living God. A Name that would echo through eternity as He meets us in our times of need. What does this mean for us today? Who is El Roi?

The same yesterday today and forever. There are very few things our God cannot do, but one of those is to change. He cannot change! That means that the God who met Hagar in the desert is the same God who sees us today. He sees your pain. He sees your heartache. He sees what holds you captive. He desires to show you His promise that He will never leave you nor forsake you. (Hebrews 13:5) His promises for you are found in His Holy Word. I encourage you, no matter where you find yourself, to open the Bible and discover His promises for you, and then hold onto them. Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to speak to you personally – He SEES YOU and He wants to meet you!

It doesn’t matter where you come from or what you have done. Hagar was not part of Abraham’s household; she was an Egyptian slave purchased by Abraham for Sarai. It does not matter if you do not have a spiritual heritage rooted in God; He is ready and waiting to meet you and begin a line of spiritual heritage with you. It does not matter how you have acted in the past. Hagar was treated poorly because she became arrogant and flaunted to Sarai that she had gotten pregnant when Sarai could not. I am NOT saying that she should have been treated poorly. However, I do find it interesting that El Roi tells Hagar to go back and submit to her mistress. I think this almost correlates to how Jesus met so many men and women, and after seeing and meeting them where they were, He said, “Now go and sin no more.” He sees us, in our sin and dirtiness, and still desires to bring freedom and hope to us.

God honors even those who do not seem ‘fit’. I find it very interesting that God purposed that this story, and this name, was included in the Bible. He made sure that the giving of the name El Roi was attributed not only to a slave, but to a woman. In a time when women were seen as nothing more than property, our God elevated not only a woman, but the lowliest of the women. Throughout Scripture, we see how God points out women leaders – and many times they are much less than perfect. Prostitutes,

Gentiles, adulterers; the Bible is full of stories of women who seemed less than worthy, but OUR GOD SAW THEM!

I want to draw your attention to one final story.

It is another hot day in a wilderness at another water source, Jacob’s Well. A woman is found here, in the heat of the day, drawing water. She is an outcast. People look down on her. She is living in sin – even in the eyes of a sinful city. On this day, however, her life would change because of an encounter with our God. We don’t know all that went through this woman’s mind as she was met at the well by Jesus. What we do know is that on this day our God would announce Who He truly was. Jesus would tell this woman, “I am He (the Messiah)…” Just as God was named El Roi by a woman, it was to a woman He would meet that He would announce for the first time that He (Jesus) was God. He would announce to this woman of ill repute that He came to save ALL, not just those deemed worthy; that His name would be proclaimed on every mountain and in every valley. One of those Names is El Roi.

I pray that you are able to truly understand even a sliver of the love that our Father has for you. Hold tight to the name El Roi as you believe that He truly sees you!

Below is a video I found incredibly powerful; I pray that it ministers to you as it did to me.

Check Out These Other Blog Posts

Loneliness Blog Banner
Dr. Dinesh S. Michel



Strategies for Pastors and Leaders

Dr. Dinesh S. Michel

Loneliness is a common human experience that transcends age, occupation, and social status. Even in the context of church ministry, where pastors and leaders are surrounded by a congregation, it’s possible to feel isolated and alone. This article explores the unique challenges of loneliness within church ministry and offers strategies that I myself am using to combat it.

The Loneliness Paradox

At first glance, it might seem paradoxical that individuals in church ministry, who are often surrounded by a community of believers, can experience loneliness. However, ministry can be isolating for several reasons:

Role Expectations:

​ Pastors and leaders are often seen as spiritual guides, and there’s an expectation that they should have it all together. This can make it challenging for them to admit their struggles, including loneliness.

Lack of Peer Relationships:

​ While pastors and leaders have strong connections with their congregations, they may lack close peer relationships within their own ministry circles. They often shoulder the burdens of others but may not have someone to share their own burdens with.

High Stress Levels:

​ The demands of church ministry, including sermon preparation, pastoral care, and administrative tasks, can lead to high stress levels. This stress can exacerbate feelings of loneliness and isolation.

Strategies to Combat Loneliness

  1. Seek Accountability:

    Pastors and leaders should actively seek out mentors or peers with whom they can build accountability relationships. These relationships provide a safe space to share struggles and receive support.

  2. Prioritize Self-Care:

    Ministry can be all-consuming, leaving little time for personal well-being. It’s crucial to prioritize self-care, including regular exercise, rest, and time for hobbies that bring joy and relaxation.

  3. Establish Boundaries:

    Set clear boundaries for work hours and responsibilities. Overextending oneself can lead to burnout and increased feelings of loneliness.

  4. Foster Peer Connections:

    Create opportunities for pastors and leaders within your church community to connect and build peer relationships. This can be done through small groups, retreats, or regular meetings specifically for leaders.

  5. Spiritual Discipline:

    Deepen your spiritual discipline. Regular prayer, meditation of the word, and reflection can provide a sense of connection with God, helping to alleviate loneliness.

  6. Professional Counseling:

    Don’t hesitate to seek professional counseling if loneliness becomes overwhelming. Therapists can provide guidance and support to address these feelings.

Loneliness in church ministry is a real and challenging issue. However, with awareness and proactive steps, pastors and leaders can combat these feelings and create a more supportive and connected ministry environment. Remember that it’s okay to seek help and that you don’t have to battle loneliness alone. By prioritizing self-care, seeking peer relationships, and deepening your spiritual discipline, you can find greater fulfillment and connectedness in your ministry journey.

Read More »
More than Equals Banner Image
Bible Topics
Rev. Ron Wood

More Than Equals – Women on Paul’s Team

Let’s examine an important issue in many parts of the Body of Christ. Biblically, “What is the role of women in the church?” As a prophetic reformer, I have an assignment. I’m trying to write my vision and make it plain so leaders can run with it! I’m for church growth, evangelism, and the Great Commission!

Read More »
It's Personal With Jesus Blog Post
Rev. Ron Wood

It’s Personal With Jesus

Recently, one morning, I asked the Lord, “What do you want to show me today?” I heard words quoted to me that Jesus had spoken to Mary Magdalene outside the tomb. “Stop clinging to Me for I have not yet ascended to My Father.”

Strange! What could that possibly mean?

Read More »