All over the world the story is being told. Around a campfire on the African Savannah, under the star filled skies of the Australian Outback, in the storefronts and meeting halls of Asian and American cities, gravely voices rise and fall with emotion, telling the oldest of stories, phrase by phrase, once again… as if for the first time…
In the Beginning
Long ago, before shepherds watched over their sheep by night, and even before there was a star in the sky, a great king asked for silence.
Then the king spoke and the universe exploded into existence. He said, “Let there be light,” and the darkness ran from him. By the power of his words he created high mountains and deep valleys. With endless imagination and attention to detail, the king filled the land, waters, and sky with living creatures of every shape, color, and size.
Then, as evil eyes watched from a distance, the king reached down, picked up a handful of the earth he had made, and breathed into it his own likeness. Then the great one motioned to a surrounding paradise and said to his likeness, “All of this I am entrusting to you. Care for the land, and it will care for you.”
For a while the new caretaker was too absorbed in his work to recognize the emptiness within. The king, however, knew that it was not good for the man to be alone. So he put his likeness to sleep, and from the package the king had used to protect the man’s heart, he made a helper and a friend.
One of the gifts the king gave the couple was something they never would have thought to ask for. He hid it in two trees that he planted in the very center of the garden. One he called the “tree of life” and the other, “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” Pointing to one of them, the king said, “Eat from anything in the garden except this. If you eat from this one you will die.”
Sharing the king’s happiness, but not understanding the riddle of the forbidden fruit, the couple’s days were filled with surprise, laughter, and growing wonder. (Pause here for conversation… or click here for Part 2).
For Conversation: This is only the beginning of the unfolding drama that would eventually send heralding angels to the Shepherd’s Fields of Bethlehem. Long before wise men from the East made their way to worship the newly born king of the Jewish people, the first chapters of Genesis describe the wonder of the One who,
1. Makes something out of nothing.
2. Speaks light into darkness.
3. Brings order out of chaos.
4. Breathes his own likeness into a handful of dirt.
5. Fills loneliness with friendship?
6. Gives meaning to everything?
7. Gives life to those who haven’t earned it?
If you haven’t checked out a sister site, Wonderofcreation.org, I hope you’ll do so.