"Where are you?"
Do you hear it? Whispered on the wind?
That is the soft question that hovered in the cool of the air.
This is the question the Eve hid from.
Have you heard it?
Genesis 3 shares the account of Adam & Eve's disobedience ushering sin into the world. It asks the question,"Where are you?" and then pronounces punishment upon Adam, Eve and upon us all.
In all of the glitter, festivities and anticipation of Christmas day, this is where our season of Advent should begin. Though the weight of that moment rests heavy on our souls, it is also the first moment of promise from our Creator.
And I will put enmity
Between you and the woman,
And between your seed and her seed;
He shall bruise you on the head,
And you shall bruise him on the heel.
There is a beautiful picture of Eve and the Virgin Mary standing together. This drawing done by Sr Grace Remington (I don't have permission to display the art, but you may click on her name to see it for yourself.) depicts Eve after disobeying God being comforted by a very pregnant Mary. What I love about this picture is that as the serpent is wrapped around Eve's leg, Mary is crushing it's head beneath her heel. It is a simple, but profound image of God's promise fulfilled.
The truth of it draws us in invitation.
Where are you?
When God called out that question, Adam & Eve hid, well aware of the shame that now marred the image of God in them. They needed a covering.
There are times that I am aware of my shame. Aware of the distance between myself and the Lord. Sometimes, it is because of outright sin in my life. Other times it is the immersion of time & attention spent on things other than God. Just plain busyness plays a part in the distance between us. And yet, I can hear His loving whisper, "Where are you?"
I, like Eve, tend to want to hide. I hide because I have neglected my heart. I hide because I am afraid of what He will ask me to do, the broken places He wants to use. I hide because I am tired & if I stop to answer, something might not get done. Perhaps that is why this depiction of Mary struck so deeply in my heart. When I saw it, it was like I could feel her arms wrap around me, saying "He covers you." It was an invitation to come just as I am & rest in the covering of Jesus' love for me.
I can come when my attitude is hard,
When my heart is broken,
And when my mind is busy.
Advent is a jubilation of Jesus' coming. It is a celebration of Mary saying, "Yes, behold your servant, let it be done." It is the recognition of the promise fulfilled.
Our sin forgiven.
Our shame covered.
The image of God restored.
If only you will answer, "Yes, I am here, Lord"
Therefore, since we have so great a High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God,
let us hold fast our confession.
For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weakness but one who has been tempted in all things as we are,
yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace,
So That we may receive mercy and
find help in time of need.