We learn a lot about ourselves when we are able to objectively consider our natural instincts. For better or for worse our instincts reveal parts of our true self, as we are, in a given moment. At times we don’t like what we see in ourselves, but our story’s don’t have to end there.
The First Reaction To The First Mistake
Just like observing our instincts gives us insight into who we are, observing the narrative surrounding the first pair of people gives us insight into our shared humanity.
In the opening pages of the book of Genesis (opening book of Protestant Scriptures & Hebrew Torah) we enter in to the story of God creating Adam- the first human- and out of Adam creating Eve. Humanity’s first couple was here, living life without an ounce of shame (2:25).
Living life without experiencing some type of shame seems a bit far-fetched for us. Let’s call it like it is: This world, in addition to our natural instincts, gives us plenty of reasons to get down on ourselves. However, quickly in Adam and Eve’s story we see that things were no different for them.
In summary, Adam & Eve were told not to eat the fruit of “the tree of knowledge of good and evil,” but a fallen and crafty creature persuaded them to do so (2:17, 3:4-6). What happens next in the story is an experience all too common for us.
They had realized they made a mistake. Shame, for the first time, had set in (3:7). Once they realized God was near they acted on their instinct and hid (3:8).
Luckily, the story of Adam & Eve doesn’t end with them hiding from God behind the trees of the garden. After a series of [truly incredible] questions (3:9, 11, 13), and in the midst of revealing the repercussions of this instance of misused freedom (3:14-19), God makes new garments for Adam & Even and dresses them anew. Don’t miss this powerful act of love: God has crafted the wardrobe of the second chance, and in this moment reveals to humanity His true self, marked by love, grace, and a desire for restoration.
But none of this could have happened if Adam & Even didn’t do one key thing: Come out from hiding.
Come Out And Be Healed
Has shame set in on you? If you were honest with yourself, would you realize you are hiding? Hiding from God and/or others? Like our first ancestors, your story doesn’t have to end where you find yourself right now. There is a new opportunity- a second chance- being extended to you. But you must put yourself in a position to receive it.
Like the new garments God clothed Adam & Eve with, God has new garments to clothe you with. Garments of forgiveness. Grace. Purpose. New identity. Healing.
Because He is a God of love, He wants to tailor them just for you (3:21). Like any good tailor he’ll need to take some measurements. He’ll need to observe your posture. He’ll need to make note of the beautiful details that make you, you.
But this means that what must happen might be the last thing you want- He needs to get close to you. The position you must put yourself in to receive this wardrobe of love in one that is of close proximity to Him.
So brother…sister…come out from hiding. Stop allowing the fallen and crafty elements of this world to convince you of lies. Stop lying to yourself (and likely, others) about how you are, or where you are. Ditch the piecemealed wardrobe you created for yourself and exchange it for one from The Creator.
The moment you step out from behind your hiding place you will be taking your first steps towards healing. So walk, and don’t stop walking.