The One Who Sees
by Kashif A. Graham
I

t was the middle of the night, and I wanted to die. I was in the eighth grade at a small junior high school in Nowhere-ville, New York. I felt ostracized from the rest of my peers after what should have been a private incident became public.

Let me explain. An audacious student had been making repeated, uncomfortable, and inappropriate advances toward me. After what seemed like months of immoral suggestions, I decided that maybe I should respond. I had already been feeling low, alone, and had been the victim of bullying for many years. He seemed to be giving me the only “friendly” attention from my male peers.

I sent him a fatal text message.

Following the message came a slew of phone calls . . . and then, I couldn’t control it. Gossip ran through the student body before I could get my loafers on. I was toast. School administrators began questioning me, one with the desire to put me at the forefront of her new pro- LGBT campaign.

I give God the glory for a praying mother and an observant father.

Amid this bitter history, God plunged a sweet tree into my waters. God saw.

God also saw Hagar, who was handled like an object so her mistress, Sarai, could build a family. When barren Sarai learned Hagar was pregnant, she despised her and treated her harshly. Hagar ran to the desert to escape, and the angel of the Lord came to help her (Gen. 16:1-7).

The angel comforted Hagar with a promise from the Lord: “I will so increase your descendants that they will be too numerous to count” (v. 10 NIV). God met Hagar where she was.

In my situation, after gossip flooded throughout the student body, I hid in the library. I spent my lunch hours there, and took every other opportunity to conceal myself behind mountains of books. One of the librarians commented that it was like my sanctuary. I guess that’s why I’m a writer.

As He did for Hagar, God met me where I was. In the midst of brokenness, a gay complex, and suicidal thoughts, God began to work. How?

He began to show me who I was.

Old friends melted off, and I went through a season of solitude. Where I used to secretly struggle with homosexual thoughts, I began to seek counsel and open myself for accountability to what I was viewing on the Internet and other
media sources. I knew God had seen my struggle because He sent people to prophesy to me about what I was going through.

As I continued to pray, I found myself in a place of deliverance. No, I did not magically arrive there; it took many seasons of prayer before I could finally break free. But

“if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed” (John 8:36 NKJV).

God told Hagar who she was. Though she had been rejected, God loved her and gave her a sure word of prophecy. How did Hagar respond?

“Then she called the name of the Lord who spoke to her, You-Are-the-God-Who- Sees” (Gen. 16:13 NKJV).