Genesis 3:6-7 (NIV)
6 When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
We all know this passage from Genesis. The point at which Adam and Eve changed the world forever. We have heard this since we were children. How does this affect us today?
I am currently taking the “Epic of Eden” study with Louise McEvoy. This is the second time I have taken this study. In the Epic of Eden, we are studying the Old Testament, and WOW, what a study! Professor Sandra Richter starts at the beginning of the Old Testament and neatly arranges it for my super-organized brain. Some of the stories in the Old Testament are tough! We know the stories, but we try to forget them because we don’t like them, or they don’t make sense in our world today. However, she emphatically insists this is our story, our history. We need to know it and embrace it.
Adam and Eve chose autonomy and became the first to sin. Understanding their story helps us to build and understand our own lineage and see that there is hope. Adam and Eve ate the “juicy fruit” (credit to Louise McEvoy), and the repercussions impact us to this day. God gave us free will to make decisions. These decisions are not always good and impact others.
Decisions of others cause challenges in our lives that in turn form who we are. I probably would not be writing this devotional if others’ decisions did not affect me. I was the daughter of a single, teenage mother who was addicted to alcohol and drugs, working three jobs to keep us fed and a roof over our heads. At the time, I could not see the good in my situation and was angry for a long time. I wanted to forget about my past and sweep it under the rug. However, like Adam and Eve, this is part of my story and has shaped who I am.
Looking back on my life now, I know I would not have taken the same path to get here without struggles. I would not be at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church and surrounded by this amazing church family. Sometimes you cannot see the way out while you are in the struggle, but it is there.
I can see now that God was with me throughout my childhood. I can embrace my struggles now. In Adam and Eve’s story God showed mercy and allowed them to populate the earth and through their lineage bore Jesus. God is with us now and guiding us through this pandemic. If you look and pray you can see him in action all around us. God is here, this is hope. Thanks be to God!
“Read Genesis and be encouraged. There is hope! No matter how dark the world situation seems, God has a plan. No matter how insignificant or useless you feel, God loves you and wants to use you in his plan.” -Life Application Study Bible
Please, God, let us see your redemptive mercy. Let us see how our struggles form us and change us for the good. In your name we pray. Amen.