The man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man, "Where are you?" He answered, "I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid." And he said, "Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?" The man said, "The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it." Then the Lord God said to the woman, "What is this you have done?" The woman said, "The serpent deceived me, and I ate." (Genesis 3:8-13)
Since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God's throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Hebrews 4:14-16)
Going out for a walk has been something that has sustained many of us through the first, and now the second, lockdown. The benefits are many; there is the exercise, the fresh air and the sunlight, all of which are good for our physical health and there is the change of scenery and the appreciation of God’s creation as it moves through its annual rhythms which are good for our mental and spiritual health. If we are also able to walk with someone else, a family member or a friend, there is also the benefit of being able to talk about things that are on our minds and to get a wider perspective.
I love the implication in Genesis 3, prior to ‘The Fall’, of God walking in the Garden of Eden, in the cool of the day, with Adam and Eve and just talking together. Adam: “Wow, just look at that view! God: “I’m glad you like it! And what do you think of that beautiful creature with such a long neck?
All of this was lost when sin came into the world and, like Adam and Eve, we started to blame each other for our mistakes, we became susceptible to deception and distortion of the truth, and we started to hide from God because we felt naked before him.
Are there things in your life where you feel vulnerable and naked before God, things you wouldn’t share even with a loved one or friend? God is looking for you and calling to you “Where are you?”
Don’t hide, instead talk to him, he knows all about it anyway, he was there all the time and he understands.
Unlike Adam and Eve, who were expelled from the garden and banished from God’s presence, we have access to God through Jesus Christ, our great high priest, who offered himself as a sacrifice so that we can come boldly into God's presence, forgiven, cleansed and set free from all that holds us back. You are not naked if you are a follower of Jesus; he has clothed you in his robes of righteousness.
Why not go for a walk with God? Tell him what is on your heart: your questions, your concerns and your fears. Also thank him for the many blessings he has showered on you. And then listen to what he has to say to you.
Lord, I come to you.
For the wonder of your creation, for the blessing of salvation and for the glory to come,
Lord, I thank you.
Lord, I come to you.