Where are you

          Have you ever been told not to do something but did it anyway? I think it is safe to say that we all have (I was told not to scratch my chicken pox). We are instructed not to do certain things by family, friends, teachers, doctors, bosses, the government and most importantly God.

          When a parent tells a child not to touch a hot stove, it is so the child will not burn himself. When a boss tells an employee not to take blueprints out of the office, it may be so no one can steal the company’s ideas. When the law tells you not to text and drive, it is so you will not endanger yourself and others. When God told Adam and Eve not to eat the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil it was so they would not have to experience the pain of death (Genesis 2:16-17) (they were not even supposed to touch it). Often we do not heed “do not” warnings, I know I do not. Sometimes it is because I think no harm will come of it and other times it is because I think someone is holding out on me. In Genesis 3, the serpent encouraged Eve to think that God was holding out on them and did not want to share the benefits of the knowledge of good and evil with them. Eve ate the fruit after being swayed by the serpent and Adam after being swayed by Eve. Why a talking snake did not strike Eve as odd and why she was loitering near the tree in the first place, only God knows. After their eyes were opened Adam and Eve realized they were naked and covered themselves with fig leaves. I have come to think that it was not just their physical nakedness that they were trying to hide, but their spiritual nakedness as well after all, they had done the one thing God told them not to do. By disobeying God, Adam and Eve weakened the link between themselves and god and damaged the spiritual relationship between them. They went from being able to stand face to face with God to hiding from Him. When they hid, God called out saying, “Where art thou?” Of course God already knew where Adam and Eve were and what they had done. I imagine it is like when you break something in your house and your parents know you did it but ask you about it anyway just to see if you will be honest. I also feel like God was asking about the state of their spiritual wellbeing where “where are you?” means “where do you stand?” Unfortunately Adam and Eve’s fall changed how they and future generations would interact with God, nature, and each other.

          I cannot even fathom how God felt when Adam and Eve sinned.  Not to make light of the situation but I think it is similar to when you encounter a young animal or a child. You feed it, bathe it, coddle it and spend time trying to form a bond but then someone else walks in and they receive all the affection you worked so hard for without even lifting a finger. God probably walked and talked with Adam and Eve, telling them all sorts of wonderful things. He made them in his own image and gave them ten star living quarters and dining options yet, the serpent plants a tiny seed of doubt in Eve’s mind and everything God said flew out of the window. So, I do not know about God, but I would have felt anger, sadness, frustration and disappointment. That said, I think it is important to hold God’s word in high regard especially since He is looking out for my best interest. I am working toward becoming a person that God will never have to ask “Where are you?”

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