"Do not be afraid, Abram.
I am your shield,
your very great reward."
Looking out into the horizon and gazing into the wild surrounding of Canaan, his hands lay entwined with hers tightly. As he looks at his wife, he feels this deep sense of dread and failure. The lines on her face seem to deepen every second, her skin sagging lower and lower.
"Sarai, shall we go through one more attempt?" Abram whispers apprehensively. When he asks his wife this one question, she brings up her other hand to caress his cheek, as tiny tears slip from her eye lids.
"I don't know, Abram. The Lord has kept me from having children." At this, Sarai breaks down and sobs uncontrollably. Her husband immediately brings both of his arms around and holds her tightly.
"The Lord is just and will give us a son, be patient. We just need to trust and believe in His righteousness." Abram tries to comfort Sarai. When Sarai heard this, her tears come to a stop, stiffening instantly.
"Go, sleep with my maidservant; perhaps I can build a family through her." It pained Sarai to say this, but she masked her urge to take it back. She turned to Abram and placed his hands on his shoulders. "Trust me. This is the only way. I am a barren woman and the Lord does not seem to be taking any action.I have tried my very hardest to wait and wait, but no more." Abram is taken aback, but he doesn't argue.
The next day, Sarai gets up and approaches her maidservant, Hagar. She tells her,
"Hagar, I want you to wash yourself and put on this clean robe and wait outside of this door." Hagar is puzzled at her mistress's request, but she doesn't not voice out her concern. She is not particularly fond of her mistress. Ever since the Pharaoh presented her as a gift to Abram and Sarai, her life is not happy. She is constantly shunned by the Hebrew community around her, always feeling ostracized. A chill ran through her as she slipped on the robe Sarai has given her after taking a fairly short bath in a nearby river. Hagar can't help but feel a feeling of foreboding, as if something terrible is going to happen to her. As she walks to the door that Sarai has instructed her to wait outside of, fear strikes her. A certain urgency develops inside her but the door is like a magnetic force that keeps pulling her closer and closer.
Once her footsteps stop right in front of the door, Abram appears suddenly in front of her as he opens the door from the inside. His face is haggard and his hands are shaking as he reaches out and grabs Hagar by the arm. The touch surprises Hagar, making her jump back a little.
"Come," Abram commands. Speechless, Hagar enters into the room with Abram. The door closes abruptly once she is inside. Abram pulls Hagar to the nearby bed and tells her to sit on it. "Hagar, as you know my wife is barren, but we need a son. You are our only solution."
Hagar gasps and tries to get off the bed, but Abram's arms sticks out immediately and pulls her immediately back down, making her fall on her back onto the bed. Her arms squirms and struggles as Abram pins her down beneath him.
Knowing that it was useless to fight, Hagar softly whimpers, "Nooo..."
"Abram, she's conceived," Sarai announces to her husband after two months. Abram turns to his wife and brings her close to him.
"We're finally going to have a son," Abram whispers into Sarai's ear as he plants a kiss on her cheek. They smile at each other.
Hagar is terrified. In just one night, her virginity is taken away from her. There is no more hope for a marriage she desires. And the baby she carries in her womb cannot even be called her own. Hagar begins to hate her mistress.
"You are responsible for the wrong I am suffering. I put my servant in your arms, and now that she knows she is pregnant, she despises me. May the Lord judge between you and me." The tension between Hagar and Sarai has been escalating since the day Hagar is found to be pregnant with Abram. The two women cannot even look at each other now.
"Your servant is in your hands. Do with her whatever you think best."
Sarai's hand came down her Hagar's cheek hard. The spilled tea on Sarai's white tunic created a nasty stain.
"You careless dimwit, how dare you ruin my best cloth. Now that you bear our son, you think you can just ignore your servant duties? Wrong! What kind woman do you think you are? You are nothing to Abram. Don't you dare disrespect me, witch." Sarai yells at Hagar.
"I've had it! I'm leaving this wretched household, and I'm taking my son with me!" With that Hagar runs out and flees from Sarai into the desert.
Hagar doesn't know where to go, but all she wants to get away from Sarai, never wanting to see woman again.
"Do not be afraid, Abram.