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January 3, 2014 – Genesis 3

Click here to read Genesis 3 on BibleGateway.com

1419Ah, the holidays.  In many parts of the world, we are only partway through the “twelve days of Christmas.” (December 25 to January 6).  That means we are right in the middle of the high-risk time for the infectious epidemic known as spoiledbratitis.  In the weeks leading up to Christmas, somehow children are miraculously well-behaved; smiles are wider, obedience is quicker, bottoms are less swattened.  Yet we’ve all see these same children not one week later returning gifts at Walmart or Toys-R-Us, and it seems as if all the demons of the brimstone netherworld have taken up residence in their little adorable spastic bodies.

The toy wasn’t new enough, the phone wasn’t advanced enough, the necklace wasn’t sparkly enough, the new bike was the wrong color, the new tablet is too small, the pants are too long, the dress is too poofy and the book is too booky.  How could ye ole present-giver be so monumentally stupid as to purchase such a worthless piece of eggnog.  If only Mom and Dad had listened to them, they would know exactly what to get.  Some people just shouldn’t have kids.

BILLY’S GARDEN HAS BETTER FRUIT

We might smile and shake our heads (or “accidentally” smack them with our cart as they pass), but have you ever considered how many times we approach God like a spoiled child?  If only He would listen to us, everything would be fine.  It’s only his crazy rules and archaic view of the world (after all, he’s been around forever, how could he possibly know what the best iPhone is?) that make life so difficult.

Look at Adam and Eve in today’s reading.  Not only do they disobey God’s rules about the Eden produce section, the reason they do it is to “be wise…like God.”  Interesting plan.  Even after they screwup, they decide to “fix” the problem on their own, and get some matching fig leaf ensembles.

But when God comes, he tells them the truth.  Their way is not good enough; they will be like God , yes, they know good and evil.  But now they can no longer stay in Paradise.  Similarly, they were right to try to cover their sin, but their way was not enough.  Plants were not enough to cover up their shame; it took the death of a life, an innocent life, to provide a covering for their sin.

HEAVENLY DADDY

Too often, we try to tell God how to be God.  We see all the evil around us – God should do something about that.  My child is dying – God should heal him.  There’s a hurricane coming – God should stop that.  God didn’t do what I thought he should – He must not be God. If He doesn’t do what we want, we throw a tantrum.  “You’re not my mom anymore; I’m gonna run away; I’m gonna go live with Janie’s mom.”  “You must not be God, I’m not going to church anymore, I’m gonna check out other religions/gods.”  Are we really so much different than that lil angelic demon-spawn at Walmart?

Are you able to let God be God? Are you able to look at the way things are and say “I still trust you.”  Are you able to say “I don’t know why I can’t have this fruit, but I’ll take Your word for it.”  Or do you have to know the reason why? Is God only God if He meets your expectations?  Will you still follow when He doesn’t make sense that you can see? Can you accept that He loves you and wants the best for you?

Can you accept that an unreasonable God might have the best reasons after all?

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