being seen

The angel of the Lord found Hagar near a spring in the desert; it was the spring that is beside the road to Shur. And he said, “Hagar, slave of Sarai, where have you come from, and where are you going?”

“I’m running away from my mistress Sarai,” she answered.

She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her: “You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me”

[Deuteronomy 16:8, 13]

I think I can hear God writing me a letter, a personal one delivered on my doorstep.

He’s written a lot of letters before – you could say that runs along the beach and views along mountain top peaks and conversations with dear friends and reading Scripture…that all of this is God writing to us in a unique way.

But here, in this small space, I’m adding to the writing, because I think he wants me to. Not that I know God well enough, but in writing what I think he wants to say to me, I’m hoping I’ll start to believe it more deeply.


I see you, Alyssa.

I see you, the struggle and fight to be brave, the burden you carry to be understood and noticed.

I see you in your inner fight with progressive ideas in light of the old frameworks, the stepping outside of traditional thought for something different and the fear that comes alongside this shift, the disharmony between what you feel and the truth you want proclaimed, the reconciliation of difficult experiences and hopeful promises.

I see you trying to figure out faithfulness in work life and personal life and family life, how to be vulnerable, but also smart and cautious with your emotional self. I see you trying to work your schedule to fit exercise in because sometimes it’s the only way to release anxious energy, how you want to cross cultural and socioeconomic barriers, but recognize the cost and difficult heaviness this sometimes brings. I see you reading the poems that make you want to cry, watching the TV shows that bring laughter, eating the chocolate on the couch at the end of a long day.

I see it all.

Remember the story of Hagar and Ishmael that I keep delivering to your doorstep – in books, in blog posts, in your own mind wanderings. Remember that God found Hagar, he saw her, noticed her, paid attention to her. Remember that He met her at a spring in the desert. Remember that He said he would provide for her.

I will do the same for you.

I will find you at the spring, I will meet you in your wanderings and in your desert.


I write this, I post this to remember the truth about being seen — because some days I feel hidden. Some days I feel like I’m running around aimlessly wondering what I’m doing and where I’m going and where God is in the midst of my becoming.

So, I’ll meet him at the spring. There isn’t anything to hide, and there isn’t any effort to figure out how to word my prayers or how to journal my thoughts more articulately — it’s already understood, already embraced, already known.

And I hope in this process of trusting that he sees me, that I will see more of him.


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