Sometimes the Lord lets us hit bottom

Old Testament: Gen 21.14–16

To read the Bible in a year, read Genesis 20–22 on January 8, In the year of our Lord Christ 2021

By Don Ruhl 

Many stories in the Bible show someone getting very low in life, but that is when they turn to the Lord, or it creates a situation in which it will be obvious that the Lord is the one who worked things out because it was impossible for man to work it out, such as when Abraham and Sarah drove Hagar and her son away: 

So Abraham rose early in the morning, and took bread and a skin of water; and putting it on her shoulder, he gave it and the boy to Hagar, and sent her away. Then she departed and wandered in the Wilderness of Beersheba. And the water in the skin was used up, and she placed the boy under one of the shrubs. Then she went and sat down across from him at a distance of about a bowshot; for she said to herself, “Let me not see the death of the boy.” So she sat opposite him, and lifted her voice and wept.

– Genesis 21.14–16 

How were Hagar and her son going to survive? They had been driven away from their home and the text gives us the impression that she was in the wilderness alone. Yet, when you continue reading the story you discover that the Lord helped her, and her son did well, becoming a mighty people. 


  • Have you been so low that you did not know how you were going to survive? 
  • Can you see God working in your life? 

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