Actions often speak louder than words.
Have you ever walked into a room and noticed a familiar face? As you walk in their direction, your eyes lock as you wave hello, but theirs quickly turn away. With your greeting disregarded, it appears they don’t want to talk to you.
You begin to wonder what you may have done to offend them. Your thoughts bloat with each passing hour into overgrown insecurities. Realizing a newfound strain on your relationship, you rally your courage to go to them and reconcile. But your high hopes are only met with their avoidance or indifference.
This sort of thing happened recently to someone I know. And when it did, my heart broke for them. It was all too familiar.
But whether we like it or not, this is life. People become offended. Sometimes we do the hurting, and other times they hurt us. (If only we would all learn to think the best about one another!)
It doesn’t take much to spot a soured demeanor or attitude in the offended. Their smiles flatten, and eyes lower to inspect the floor tiles when you approach them. A permanent uneasiness settles in as you realize your standing with them is not what it once was.
Perhaps the offense was planted by the seeds of gossip by others. Maybe, your actions were misunderstood. Or maybe it was the pride of their presumption. Regardless of who is to blame, the relationship is obviously damaged, and the door to fellowship is closed.
A woman named Hagar, from the Bible also knew rejection. She was a maidservant to a couple who had no heir. One day her mistress, Sarai, directed Hagar to sleep with her husband, Abram so they could have possession of an heir. But when Hagar became pregnant, she began to despise her mistress Sarai. Sarai then began to mistreat her. Hagar fled to the desert in distress. But God told her to go back.
Many years later when Hagar’s son Ishmael was older, he began to mock the child, Isaac, whom Sarai bore, herself. Outraged by this, Sarai demanded that Abram send them away. So Hagar was sent with her child to live on their own in the desert.
While Hagar probably could have done more to remain on good terms with Sarai all those years, much of her circumstance was beyond her ability to control. Ishmael never was a part of God’s promise for Abram. So, in the end, it was God’s good will that Hagar and her son Ishmael leave camp.
As she and Ishmael wandered the barren desert with little to sustain them, I’m sure she wondered, “Why did this happen?”
I know I’ve asked that question many times. Have you? Have you ever felt like you did what you were supposed to, but nothing worked out?
Good intentions just aren’t always enough. Sometimes our highest hopes only become a nagging reminder of what is lost and may never be made right.
If you can relate, please know that you are not alone. Many of us have gone through seasons that mirror Hagar’s. Maybe we’re to blame for the start of it all, or maybe we were mistreated by another. Each day is a bitter reminder that you aren’t chosen , your effort isn’t favored, and you aren’t welcome anymore.
Twice under great duress, Hagar found herself in the desert alone and discouraged. But the Lord met her there and comforted her each time. When Sarai had mistreated her God told her how Ishmael would become a great nation one day. And in response, she then declared, “You are the God who sees me….” 
And years later, in the desert, when they had been sent away to live on their own, the Lord confirmed His promise to Hagar about Ishmael and also provided water for them as they were on the brink of death.  When Hagar and Ishmael were banished by Abram and Sarai, God saw them, and He cared for them.
When others turn away from us, God is remains.
In Psalm 18, Scripture says, “The LORD is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed.” Isn’t that comforting? The God who has created the earth, the skies, and the heavens, draws near to us even if others turn away from us.
In fact, because He is omniscient, He is keenly aware of the very moment we are wounded. Nothing is missed by God, and it doesn’t matter who we are; God sees us, and He knows.
He knows your heart, and He knows theirs. He knows all your innocence and all your guilt. (He knows theirs, too.) And yet, He cares.
Hagar was not the recipient of God’s covenantal promise to Abram and Sarai. But God cared for her nonetheless. Sometimes the outcome is not what we had hoped for, but we can be sure that God’s sovereignty will work for good in our lives and His glory in the end.
When you are tempted to feel unwanted or uncared for by others, remember that God has loved you enough to give his Son, Jesus, to die in your place on the cross. When you are tempted to believe that no one cares for you, remember that you are more valuable to God than the birds that He faithfully provides for each day. 
Even Jesus felt the pain of rejection and betrayal by his closest friends and by many of the people he had come to save. He knew the anguish of having the Father turn his face away as He hung on the cross bearing the guilt of our sins. 
But when we come to Christ in faith, He promises never to leave us. In fact, He guarantees this by giving us his own Spirit to live in us. So wherever we go, or whatever may happen, He is with us, even to the very end of the age.
We may go through difficult seasons where love becomes lost with our friends or loved ones. But the love that God has for us through Jesus is never lost. It is immeasurable, extravagant, and everlasting. In other words, it won’t ever cease to exist for us because of Jesus.
This is a hope that will not disappoint! It is assured!
I leave you with the words of Psalm 34 to process and pray over the wounded areas of your life. May God’s extraordinary love and favor prove faithful in the absence of that from others.
I will extol the LORD at all times;
His praise will always be on my lips.
I will glory in the LORD;
Let the afflicted hear and rejoice.
Glorify the LORD with me;
Let us exalt his name together.
I sought the LORD, and he answered me;
He delivered me from all my fears.
Those who look to him are radiant;
Their faces are never covered with shame.
This poor man called, and the LORD heard him;
He saved him out of all his troubles.
The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him,
And he delivers them.
Taste and see that the LORD is good;
Blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.
Fear the LORD, you his holy people,
For those who fear him lack nothing.
The lions may grow weak and hungry.
But those who seek the LORD lack no good thing.
Come, my children, listen to me;
I will teach you the fear of the LORD.
Whoever of you loves life and desires to see many good days,
Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from telling lies.
Turn from evil and do good;
Seek peace and pursue it.
The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous,
And his ears are attentive to their cry;
But the face of the LORD is against those who do evil,
To blot out their name from the earth.
The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them;
He delivers them from all their troubles.
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted
And saves those who are crushed in spirit.
The righteous person may have many troubles,
But the LORD delivers him from them all;
He protects all his bones,
Not one of them will be broken.
Evil will slay the wicked;
the foes of the righteous will be condemned.
The LORD will rescue his servants;
No one who takes refuge in him will be condemned.
 Genesis 16:13
 Genesis 21:8-21
 Matthew 6:26 “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?”
 Matthew 27:46 “About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, ‘Eli, Eli lema sabachthani?’ which means ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’”
 John 14:15-16
 Mathew 28:20
 Psalm 34 NIV
Donna Fletcher says
Thank you for this amazing message. I know it comes from your heart. I felt the despair, and feel the restoration. “Taste and see that the Lord is good”