Where Are You?

Life Notes—July 21, 2011

They heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden at the time of the evening breeze, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.  But the Lord God called to the man, and said to him, “Where are you?”   Genesis 3:8-9

God created the earth and the universe from formless nothingness.  God created Adam and Eve to shepherd over life on the newly shaped earth.  The serpent came into the Garden, tempting Adam and Eve with the forbidden fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, and they ate.  Having so eaten, the writer of Genesis says, “Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew they were naked, and they sewed fig leaves together and made loincloths for themselves (Genesis 3:7).”  And they tried to hide from God. 

Could the Lord God really have not known where Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden?  It likely wasn’t God who didn’t know; but Adam and Eve.  They were hiding from God because they were embarrassed and ashamed, thinking if they could postpone an encounter with God they might find a way to cover their sin.  It is very human, having done something we know we shouldn’t, to try to cover the evidence. 

What would I say if God asked, “Where are you?”  Honestly, I am hiding behind my busy-ness.  I have a large yard to care for, painting to be done, kids activities, church commitments, obligations at work and a to-do list that goes on and on and on.  Never mind trying to find regular time to exercise or relax or (gasp!) pray or read the Bible or spend focused time with God.  Besides, it is nearly impossible to come into the presence of God without facing up to my shortcomings.  Not because God seeks to condemn me, but because being in the presence of the most holy, most awesome God—the very act of acknowledging someone so great and so powerful is bound to make us feel insignificant, vulnerable and unworthy.  It is easier to mow the grass. Yet, God relentlessly seeks us. And when we respond God wraps gentle arms around us so we know we are loved and valued beyond measure. Humbling ourselves, confessing our mistakes to our maker, difficult though it may be, is ultimately a healing and freeing experience. 

So, where are you?  Where is your relationship with your maker?  When was the last time you had a one-on-one with God?  When was the last time you sat in silence, listening for what God has to share with you?  For me, it’s been too long… 

This Sunday the Reverend Bob Shelton will be preaching downtown.  Life worship is at 9:40 in Brady Hall.  Traditional worship is at 8:30 and 11:00 in the sanctuary.  Mitch will preach at the west campus, where contemporary worship is at 9:00 and 11:00.  His sermon title is “It Runs In The Family,” based on Genesis 29:15-28. 

Come home to church this Sunday.  God is seeking.  Where are you?

Greg Hildenbrand, Life Music Coordinator

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