My El Roi

I am in week 2 of the book Praying the Names of GOd by Ann Spangler (2004). My study this past week was on El Roi.

El Roi

The term El ROI is only used one time in the Bible, Genesis 16:13. However, there are many references to GOD seeing or looking upon the people of the earth.

Feeling Unseen

Since I was in 5th grade, I have struggled with a sense of not being seen. I wasn’t the pretty girl or the smart girl, only the girl with the never quirky sarcastic sense of humor.

Following the falls of life, I even began to struggle with the fact that I didn’t think people could look at me without seeing my physical scars.

It was so bad at one point, that I went 2 years where I would weep every time I looked in a mirror.

What did it matter, though, I thought. I’m nothing of significance. Why should anyone see me?

I began to pull farther and farther away from others and isolated myself from most anyone I could.

HE found me in my desert

December of 2014, I found myself laying face down in the carpet of my new apartment crying.

I was ready to give up. I’ll be honest. I had just come through a divorce, and was struggling with trying to learn a new town and a new job. It was overwhelming. Add to that the fact that I was not on speaking terms with my family and only had my sons on the weekends. Depression was smack in my face.

I got up the next morning, which was a Sunday. I was attending a large local church, where I thought I could simply exist and just be invisible.

I sat in the large sanctuary, filled with people, feeling the most alone that I ever had.

Then.. GOD. During the sermon that morning, the Pastor spoke on 1 Samuel 16:7b

..GOD sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.

Growing up in church, I know I had to have heard that verse many times before. The HOLY SPIRIT used it that particular December Sunday morning to make me realize that I wasn’t invisible.. that GOD sees me. HE doesn’t just look at my scars or lack of worldly beauty and turn His Holy head. He looks upon my heart, and sees me for me.

Let us see Others

We may not want to admit it, but we do tend to show preference for people based on their appearances. The well dressed woman will get greeted first. The handsome guy will get picked first.

Can we stop today & just try to see others as GOD does? Can we take the time to treat people with the value that GOD does- to see them for more than their outer appearance?


My Elohim

I am currently doing a Bible Study on the names of God, in which each week focuses on a different name. At the end of the study, I intend to do a comprehensive book review of the study. Each Saturday until then, I want to share a little with you my journey of the study each week and what it has taught me.

The book is Praying the Names of God, Ann Spangler (2004). My week one study has been on Elohim.

Elohim: Creator

Elohim is simple, Creator. We can read the account in Genesis on how God created all that we can see (and even that which we cannot..such as the microorganisms that live on the human skin.)

Perhaps you are not a Genesis Chapter One Christian, and believe in a partial evolutionist creation, evolution, or some other theory of how we got all of this galaxy. I am not here to argue with that; I will merely state that I believe firmly that GOD created. That is good enough for me.

Digging into Creation

The book Praying the Names of GOD does not have a study on the weekends, which has its perks and faults. I used my time this morning to mull over the Word of GOD and look into how creation is mentioned in the Bible.

Having used an NASB translation Bible, my search numbers are based on the NASB translation:

  • create: 5 times
  • created: 44 times
  • creation: 14 times
  • the words ‘GOD’ & ‘made’: 161 times (not all reference creation)

The Word in Genesis 1:1 for created is bara, (Strongs, H1254), which can mean

“to cut, to carve out, to form by cutting” (Gesenius Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon)

HIS handiwork

Nature is a great part of how GOD wired me. I love being in the mountains, and seeing the shapes of the rocks and hills. My grandmother even told me once that there was even an old tale in the Appalachian mountains that the ridges were actually created by God Himself taking HIS hands and cupping them a certain way.

All of it, HE created.

And HE created me.

I struggle with self-worth, a byproduct of having been in some very difficult relationships. I look at the freckly girl in the mirror, and cringe a bit. But you know what? That feisty green eyed girl I see in the mirror is also formed and fashioned by GOD’s own hands.

My Lesson of the week

I have never taken a close look at the meaning behind the word for create in Genesis 1:1 until this week. To carve- those words snagged me, causing me to stop and reflect.

The great ELOHIM, HE carved me out for a purpose. HE is a mighty, powerful GOD- HE could have made many other things, and we all know HE has certainly made much prettier ones. But HE carved me- HE created me.. for this place, for this time, and for HIMSELF.

As I shared earlier in the week, GOD did not create me to be my mom or my sister, or even one of coworkers. HE carved me out of saucy handworking people, with deep grains of prayer warrior running within.

Carving takes great care, and attention to detail. Did GOD look down years ago, and say “just a bit more dimples…there, perfect”? I do not know. I only know that I am HIS creation, and through the study this week, I have begun to see myself more in the light of being HIS creation.