July 1 - Genesis 2:8-15

Monday, July 1, 2013

Our minds reach out to the stars and wonder about what it would be like to live on another planet, yet at the moment of Creation, God put together things in such a manner that we could make our home here, on planet Earth.

Not only did He set this world in motion, but in the beginning, he set His best creation … humanity, in a home that was termed Paradise.

“Now the Lord God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed. And the Lord God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground – trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food.” (Genesis 2:8-9a)

“A river watering the garden flowed from Eden, and from there it divided” (Genesis 2:10a).

The garden in Eden was filled with lush vegetation and in Genesis 2:19-20, we read that God brought the animal kingdom in to the garden so that man could name each living creature.  Not only that, but God created a woman to be a companion and co-worker with the man.  Paradise was in place … God had given man a home.

We each try to return to this notion, don’t we?  We create our own version of paradise in our homes and it looks different to every person.  For some, the idea of a spare, empty living space is perfect while for others, they fill every inch of space with memories.  People choose to live in the mountains, by the ocean, on a river or lake, in a city or in rural places and each person finds ways to make these locations their own version of paradise.

As a pastor’s family, we had very little choice as to what our house would look like, sometimes even as to what community we would live in, but Mom and Dad had made a choice to live in Iowa.  However, every time we moved into a new home, Mom’s first tasks were to find ways we could make the home ours, to create a haven … a paradise of sorts within those walls.

God gave us an image of paradise which we've tried to emulate in all the centuries since then. We won’t truly know what it looks like until we arrive in the new heaven and new earth, but he also gave us imaginative minds by which we could explore His creation and find our own version of paradise.