Once upon a time there was a beautiful garden. There were so many flowers it was like walking in a rainbow.
In this garden lived a man named Adam. He was very happy. He had more food than he could ever eat in his lifetime, a job that he loved, a lot of animals and the best friend in the whole world.
But when his friend went home, Adam was left all by himself in the garden. He was lonely. He noticed that all the animals walked in twos: male and female. But he could not find a match for himself.
Seeing how lonely he was, God, his best friend, decided to match him. He made Adam the perfect woman.
It was love at first sight. They committed their lives to each other in a simple garden wedding.
Everything was perfect until the serpent entered the picture. Then Eve made a choice which destroyed the perfection of their home. This brings us to our first lesson:
God had told Adam not to eat of the tree that is in the center of the garden. While it's not stated, we know the information was passed on because when questioned by the snake Eve was able to say the fruit was so off limit, she couldn't even touch it (Genesis 3:1-3).
Yet, even though she thought touching the fruit would kill her, she made a conscious decision to eat the fruit and disobey God.
She knew the consequence was death and still she chose to do her own will. But it didn't stop there: she gave to Adam and he ate. Both people chose to disobey the Master.
Jamaicans have a saying: "hard ears pickney must feel." That is to say, if you won't listen and follow good advice, you will have to live with the consequences. Adam and Eve were the first "hard ears pickneys".
Yes, it is true that they understood more. We are told in Genesis 3:7 that their eyes were opened. They were also exposed to a number of things:
Shame: They realized that they were naked and made coverings for themselves (Genesis 3:7). This man and woman had spent who knows how long together, and now suddenly they were ashamed for the other person to see their unadorned bodies.
Fear: They heard God walking in the garden and they hid themselves. For the first time, they were afraid of their Creator, the One who had created all things for them (Genesis 3:8-10).
Pain: Something that God had intended to be easy and natural would now cause great sorrow and pain (Genesis 3:16).
Thorns: The ground was cursed and started producing thorns and thistles and became difficult to cultivate.
Homelessness: They lost their garden home. They had to leave their home and find another place to live.
Death: The ultimate penalty. They would no longer live forever. Death became a sure thing for them. And for us.
How many times do we make decisions that seem to only concern us? It's my money, I should be able to spend it how I like. Or, it's my body, I can do whatever I want to it.
While it may not ultimately result in death, are we making choices in the best interest of our marriage? Are we putting our spouse first in all things? Do we include God in our decision-making process?
Lord, I thank you for the lesson of Adam and Eve. I pray that you will help me to put Your wishes and that of my spouse ahead of my own. In Jesus' name. Amen.
How often do you make decisions without thinking of your spouses decisions? How many of the "little" decision turned out to have huge consequences?