Hand in the Cookie Jar

Hand in the Cookie Jar

By: Kristen Gawlik, Fiat Ventures

My fiance is really great at stocking his house with endless amounts of sweets.

Skittles. Mike & Ike’s.  Pop Tarts.  Oreos. It’s terribly wonderful.
Whenever I’m at his house and no one is looking, I find myself sneaking over to the snack cabinet to secretly treat myself to a handful of Skittles.  More than half the time, my fiance walks into the room as I am mid-snack.  What always follows is him cracking up hysterically, and it isn’t because I am sneaking food.  Instead, it’s because he says every time he finds me eating sweets, I look at him with a face that says, “Oh no, I’ve been caught eating a delicious treat!”

This Sunday’s First Reading tells us how humanity’s first encounter with sin went down.  The Book of Genesis tells us that, when God was walking through the garden, Adam was hiding.  Once God sees him, he asks Adam why he was hiding.  His response is that he was hiding because he was naked.  Now, in the 21st century we might read this and say, “Well, duh, wouldn’t any of us run away to cover up?”  There’s a little bit more going on here, though.

Adam was hiding from God because, for the first time ever, he had made the choice to use his free will to choose against God instead of toward God.  Like my at-times crazy sweet tooth leads me to feel like I need to be sneaky about my candy intake, Adam’s sin led him to believe he had to hide from the Lord.

As we fast forward through all of history, we as a human race have gotten pretty good at hiding from God and those we love when we feel we’ve fallen short of who we are meant to be.  This hiding can manifest itself in many ways—avoiding prayer, clinging to more sin to fill the void, being somebody we’re not—the list goes on. The reality is this, though: my fiancé finds no reason for me to sneak sweets while he isn’t looking, and, more importantly, God doesn’t want us to hide from Him because of our sin.

All of us were born with original sin, and while the serpent in the garden thought that sin would have the final word, Jesus had other plans.  Because of His great love for us, Jesus was willing to pay the greatest price of His very life that our sin may never separate us from Him.  That’s the love our God has for us!  While God never wants sin for us, He certainly never wants us to run away from Him because of our sin.  Our heavenly Father desires our closeness to Him so much that He was willing to sacrifice His only Son that we might be forgiven of our sins.  Just as Jesus rose from the dead, we, too, are called to rise to new life in Him.

This week, I challenge you to see what it is that’s keeping you from having a stronger relationship with God.  Once you figure that out, ask Him to love you in that area. He wants to, and He’s waiting to. Let’s not hide from our Father, like Adam in the garden; rather, let’s run to Him, trusting His love for us knows no limits.

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