There is a huge part of me that is unsettled as I live in this fallen world. That unease grows the older I get.
I’m not talking about an unnecessary worry of circumstances, but an uncomfortable feeling that things just aren’t right here. It’s difficult to look around at our world and not come to that conclusion.
We were created to live in a perfect world. Although God knew we would sin, He still placed Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden in unspoiled beauty and surroundings. Because of their choice and their sin, all that was taken away, and people have been trying, ever since, to get back to that existence in one way or another. Look at a few of the ways it was “to be.”
1) We were created to have a perfect and whole relationship with God. There was perfect unity between God and people (Adam and Eve) before sin entered. That was shattered with one bite, and God and mankind have been in a battle ever since. We are a broken people, and some of us have the deep wounds and scars to show for it. No longer can we walk “in the cool of the garden” without interruption from the enemy. He prowls around to devour us. In addition, we sense shame, and that can cause us to run from our Loving Creator.
2) We were created to have perfect and whole relationships with one another. Because our relationship with God was severed, and everyone is broken, so are our ideal relationships with others. This spills over into marriages, family, churches and friendships, as well as on a national and international level. Hurt people hurt people.
3) We were created for life. There was no death. It does not fit into the perfect plan. Death is separation. We miss friends and family who have left this world. And, although we know if they were Christians – they are in a better place, we are left with a hole in our lives that was never intended. Not only that, but we fight, with our lives, to stay alive, to the point that many now die hooked up to machines in a cold and sterile environment.
4) We grow old. Did they age in the Garden of Eden? It doesn’t seem so. The years creep up on us and we find that our youth has been stolen by time. In fact, my husband has said that if he ever gets up in the morning and doesn’t hurt, he will know he’s in heaven!
5) Adam and Eve were completely satisfied with their surroundings. They had everything they needed and every possible, perfect way to care for all which had been entrusted to them. And they had purpose. Now, people are simply discontented. We try to manage it with what seemingly will work and improve our lives. Women go after every body fix they can. Men take pills. Everyone seems to want bigger houses, better jobs, faster cars, endless vacations and money. “More” is the word. We want more.
6) Loneliness wasn’t a word in the beginning. Now, because of circumstances beyond our control, we miss people. We miss loved ones who have died, or those who have moved far away. Or we move and have holes in our hearts. There is a constant longing to be near those we love, either in proximity or relationally.
I would say that most of us have fallen into the trap of “fixing” one or more of these areas ourselves.
I don’t want to die. I believe there is something innately within us that fights death. We avoid it at all costs. We don’t even want to talk about it. Yet, every person has a plan for after death, whether they realize it or not. Even atheists discuss it. They claim there is nothing after death, but they still talk about it. Why? And sadly now people are starting to take control of their own mortality…or so it seems. Perhaps they think it will take some of the fear out of it.
Aging isn’t much fun either. I look in the mirror and sometimes see a very old woman. Body parts sag and hurt and I don’t have the stamina I once had. Even if I were to beat my body into submission, so to speak….it’s going to fail me at some point. And for 30 years I’ve been trying to get that 15 pounds off.
I, too, enjoy nice things…pretty things. Sometimes when I go shopping I realize I have champagne tastes on a coke budget (yes, I know it’s supposed to be beer, but coke is even cheaper).
Like others, I enjoy vacations, and love Hawaii but after a few days, we must take that dreaded overnight flight and come home. Not only that, having lived there, I have come to understand that the paradise portrayed on postcards has a dark side. A very dark side. We are not shown the pictures of young girls walking the streets, or the homeless tents that line many of the beaches. Disillusionment is at every corner, even in the paradise of the islands. Especially in the islands.
SO…..with all these “broken” parts of our lives and our futile attempts to fix them….how do we live in this world contented and free? I’m glad you asked, and that will be my second part. I will soon write. I’m sure you’ve heard it all before…but maybe a different perspective will add something fresh.
Until then…know that you are loved by a loving and compassionate Heavenly Father, Who created you in His own image and wants to fill your life. And please feel free to share my blog.