Genesis 16:7–8 (MEV): The angel of the Lord found her by a spring of water in the wilderness. It was the spring on the way to Shur. And he said, “Hagar, Sarai’s maid, where have you come from and where are you going?”
And she said, “I am fleeing from the presence of my mistress Sarai.”
I love the patterns established in Genesis. This particular exchange leads us back to God seeking Adam and Eve after they sinned.
Genesis 3:8–13 (MEV): Then they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. The Lord God called to the man and said to him, “Where are you?”
He said, “ I heard Your voice in the garden and was afraid because I was naked, so I hid myself.”
And He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?”
The man said, “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.”
Then the Lord God said to the woman, “What have you done?”
And the woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”
There is a simplicity here that is often overlooked. When God seeks a lost one, one that has sinned, He seeks them out. Let’s remember that all of this happens before the law was given and before Jesus came. God seeks the sinner in order to restore the broken relationship.
When He finds the one, He gently leads to the problem by asking a question. He’s not asking for information, there is another purpose to His questions.
In each of these examples, God asks a question and it is followed by a confession of sin.
Oh, I know some of you are going to scoff. You’re going to say that there is no contrition or sorrow in the responses… As if feelings have anything to do with a confession of truth.
Sometimes just a simple acknowledgement of our foibles in the presence of a Holy yet loving God is all that is needed. We don’t have to pound our chests, or cry rivers of tears. A simple confession saying this is the problem is the first step to conquering the problem together.
When you sin, don’t wait until you actually feel sorrow or remorse for what you did. Go to your Heavenly Father and confess it. He’s waiting.