Here in the midwest, fall brings with it the beautiful colors of leaves turning color, from deep crimson to bright yellow.
Kiddos run through pumpkin patches to claim the biggest, lumpiest pumpkin, and then grunt and push as they try to carry their prized orange squash back to their picture taking parents.
Apple orchards host fresh homemade cidar, hayrides, and some kind of a souvenir shop filled with fresh baked goodies. Families enjoy afternoons of walking through yards lined with full trees, selecting and picking the prettiest, ripest, biggest, most delicious apples they see.
The afternoon activities end for each visitor as they load bushels of apples into the back seats and trunks of their cars.
The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.” Genesis 1:15-17
Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” Genesis 3:1
When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. Genesis 3:6
The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. And the Lord God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.” Genesis 3:21,22
Charis Childbirth invited me to share a few thoughts on these passages.
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God. Revelation 2:7
In the Creation story, we see the strengths and weaknesses of Eve. We see how the enemy saw her potential, her innate value, and how he divided between her and her husband, and how he divided between her and her God.
In the Creation story of my fourth baby, the enemy also saw my potential, my innate value.
I perhaps should have caught on. I should have identified the same old trickery he’s used since the beginning of time. But, there he was, slithering up to me, in my time of darkness. There he was, whispering temptations to retaliate against the God who was giving me grace. There he was, inviting me to be ungrateful and even hateful of the parameters and framework my husband was trying to set for my feelings, for my protection, for my good. There he was, provoking me to claim that my grief language was superior to my husbands, that my husband was neglectful, that my God’s participation in my life was inadequate, and that my God was reckless, thoughtless, and cruel.
Because I have been tempted by that apple, I praise the Lord eternally that He had the sense to kick us out of the Garden. I know what that feeling was like, that feeling of needing cover. That feeling of isolation, confusion, darkness, distrust, suspicion, defense. I know what it’s like to take that bite from the tree of “knowledge.”
I praise the Lord that I am not stuck like that.
I praise the Lord that this life is temporal.
I praise the Lord that the everlasting life that God has to offer is in a place free from such devastation, corruption and decay, but is in a place of innocence, purity, and safety.
This fall, if you are in that place of lonliness, if you hear the alluring whisper of the enemy, manipulating you to believe that you are alone, that you are better off divided from God, that you are better off divided from your husband, that you are better off divided from your loved ones, please, spit that apple out. Crush it. Don’t consume it, and don’t let it consume you.
If you are finding that your grief language is different than your husband’s, different from your loved ones, there are ways to bridge these differences in a healing, helpful way.
You aren’t alone, even when it feels that way. Even when the enemy tells you that you are.
Let us look together at some things your loved ones can benefit from knowing about you.
Let us look together at some things you can benefit from knowing about your husband.
Let us look together at some things you can benefit from knowing about your God.