When the water in the container was all gone, in desperation she left the child under the shade of one of the bushes. Then she walked off and sat down opposite him, about a bowshot away. I can’t bear to watch my child die. As she sat there, she cried loudly. God heard the voice of young Ishmael, and a messenger of God called out to Hagar from heaven. Why are you so upset, Hagar? Don’t be afraid. God has heard the voice of young Ishmael. (Genesis 21:15-17 VOICE).
Reading this, I realised something I had never considered before. The accompanying notes in by Bible translation highlighted the fact that though Ishmael was about 16 years old at this time, Hagar still considers him as just a child but Ishmael wasn’t a baby by this time. However, I don’t know why I always pictured him as still a baby or little child. Am I the only one?
Many Bible translations refer to him as child but the Amplified Bible, Classic Edition calls him ‘youth’.
Anyway, immediately, the Lord reminded me of the conversation I had with someone the night before. They were telling of a time they were facing some challenges and how painful it was not knowing where they would live, what to eat, etc… “that’s difficult with a child”, they said.
Hmmm… that’s difficult no doubt but somehow, I found myself telling them that their child was stronger than they thought and that the Lord was also preparing the child for her own ministry and as parents, we should trust that our children are in God’s hands.
Back to Hagar… What troubles you, Hagar? Fear not, for God has heard the voice of the youth where he is (Genesis 21:17 AMP).
Hmmm… God heard the voice of the youth and not the mum’s and this isn’t to say you shouldn’t be concerned about your child’s welfare but how old is the child again? I like what the Lord says next… Lift the boy up and take him by the hand, for I will make him into a great nation.” (Genesis 21:18 NIV)
Take him by the hand… walk him through some things. The journey may be rough but you need to see the well of water in front of you… Then God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water. So she went and filled the skin with water and gave the boy a drink (Genesis 21:19 NIV).
The circumstance around the child’s birth was irrelevant to God… God was with Ishmael, and he grew and developed… (Genesis 21:20 AMP).
Beloved, are you concerned about your child? Jesus calls us all into a personal relationship with Him and that includes our children and He knows exactly where they are and how to reach them. As custodian, your role is to lead them to the well of water and leave them in the Lord’s hands, trusting that… it is God who works in us all both to will and to do His good pleasures (Philippians 2:13).