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All too often we run from relationships of intentional vulnerability because we’re afraid – afraid of being fully known, fully exposed

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Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made.

He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’” But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.

And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, 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 3:1-9


Imagine reading Genesis 1-3 for the very first time. This may be difficult if you’re familiar with the narrative. But, this is one of the most dramatic and poetic texts in all of Genesis. You’ve read about the beauty, perfection, stillness, and goodness of God and his creation. You’ve just read about God’s intentionality, his loving and intimate interactions with his new creatures, and his magnificent gift of human peace and pleasure. You’ve reached the pinnacle of relational intimacy in the last line of chapter 2, “the man and his wife were naked and not ashamed.” They’re fully known and fully loved.

But then, the story shifts. Suddenly a new character enters – a villain, a serpent, a devil. He begins by questioning God and probing into the fabric of goodness and pleasure and freedom God so perfectly designed. As the narrator continues, you might find yourself cringing inside as the suspense builds all the way up to the point where their eyes are opened. They look around and they see their nakedness. But this time, they feel shame.

Shame enters the picture. Adam and Eve go from the freedom of peaceful and pleasurable intimacy into the muck of shame. In fear, they run from the closeness they once shared. They hide from each other and God – those who truly love them. It’s incredibly poignant as they cover their vulnerable parts as an outward action of an inward reality. Instead of freely living in the ideal, they now experience the real – a life of covering, a life of hiding. This is the reality we live in as well. All too often we run from relationships of intentional vulnerability because we’re afraid – afraid of being fully known, fully exposed. Today, identify those relationships in your life where you are deeply known and still loved. If you have a few of them, write your friends a note of thanks for loving you in vulnerable times. If you cannot identify any, spend some time with Jesus asking him to help you identify where fear or timidity might be hindering you from experiencing authentic love.[/vc_column_text][us_separator height=”25px” size=”custom”][vc_column_text]

By Yvonne Biel 

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