“The angel of the LORD” meets Hagar in the desert of Shur. This is the first time “the angel of the LORD” shows up in the Scriptures. What we begin to understand is this “angel of the LORD” is the pre-incarnate Christ (since Jesus didn’t receive his name until the incarnation – when he took on human flesh). What’s fascinating is that the Eternal Son shows up to a woman in the desert. The desert emotes a lot of imagery in the biblical text. It is a place of confusion, disorientation, fear, and at times, hopelessness. And this is precisely where God comes to her. Christmas reminds us that like Hagar, God desires to come to us in our times of confusion, disorientation, and hopelessness. And as we also learn from Hagar, God is not only one who sees and hears, but also responds.