Hagar, the concubine of Abraham, according to Genesis, had been banished from her master’s household at the behest of Sarah who considered her and her child, Ishmael, to be detrimental to the welfare of Isaac, Sarah’s only child. Hagar finds herself in the desert, abandoned and desolate. Her son was dying of thirst, and she cried out to God for help. An angel intervened and told her to pick her son up and hold his hand for support. She then saw a water spring and was able to save her son’s life.
This well-known story, which we read on the first day of Rosh Hashanah, delivers a message that generations of Jews from time immemorial have learned. We give our children our support, and we do not abandon them. Naturally and instinctively, the parent nurtures his or her child, and enables that child to grow and to develop physically, emotionally and spiritually. [Read more…]