Monday, January 13, 2014

The Tree and The Powercord

In the hundreds of times that I have read Genesis 1-3, I have often thought this thought.

(backstory first) God has created this vast and amazing garden... created the heavens, skies, animals, aardvarks, giraffes and mankind.  He placed them in a a perfect garden to care, with mankind, for mankind to keep it with one expectation: "Do not eat from the tree in the center of the garden" (Genesis 2).

The thought that I have thought is this: "Okay... One rule... one expectation: Don't eat of that tree. How hard could it be?  Pick another tree... and save us all some hassle."

But now, I have an 11-month old.

Myles is mobile enough to crawl, stand up and get into things.  Our living room is currently filled with all sorts of plastic toys (a ride-on-motorcycle, cars, balls and ball pit, stuffed animals galore).  All of these toys are his and for his enjoyment.  And if they weren't enough, we'd find more.  

What does Myles want?  The power cord for the laptops... the VCR... my cell phone... an extension cord... The very things that he can't have.

There is an irresistible pull of the things that we can't have.  I understand that better as a dad of an 11-month old than I did a year ago.  Not that power cords, VCRs and such are sin... but for Myles, those things could hurt him should he decide to chew on a power cord too long.  And despite the number of times that I take him or the things away from him, he continues to make a bee-line for those objects once placed in the room.

At this stage in Myles' development, he isn't ready for this thought yet.  But most of us reading this can handle it... Often we feel like God is keeping something from us (like I am taking those tasty power cords from Myles).  Maybe we should instead realize that God has something else incredible for us.  I have plenty of amazing, fun, plastic toys for Myles that can't hurt him that he could play with.

God's aim isn't to keep something from us... but to give something to us.  He wants to help us avoid pain, sorrow, scars and disappointment (all the things that sin brings) and give to us life, peace, joy and fulfillment (all the things that sin promises but can't provide).

So the next time you are tempted to chew on a tasty power cord (metaphorically speaking of course... going after something God has said "no" to), realize that God isn't trying to keep something great from you but to give you something far better in return.


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