TEXT: Genesis 3:1-12
I treasure friendships so much and from experience, I know that the gift of presence surpasses every other gift that can be exchanged between two people or parties. While other material and immaterial things including prayer can be given from a distance to a dear friend, being there; right where your friend is; listening to what they say and do not say, sometimes not saying a word but just being around them and enjoying their company is so invaluable! Whereas calling or writing to them does communicate care and concern, your physical presence speaks to a greater extent about your commitment to the friendship. True friends not only spent time together because something good or even bad has happened to either party. Many times, true friends spent time together for no apparent reason. They just love each other’s company and absence from one another makes their hearts grow fonder! As soon as they part the longing to be together again resurfaced and they reach out talking, calling, and checking on each other looking forward to being together again.
I know by now you have in mind that fantastic friend that you can’t wait to hear from and see them again. Have you been too busy lately? You can actually pause here and drop a line to them and make plans to visit them this weekend or better still show up at their workplace over lunch with that gift you have always wanted to give them and chat away the rest of the lunch hour! (If you have such a friend you can pour your cares and woes to without fear or shame because you know they won’t judge you; that one who completes your sentences with the very words you would have said and hears what you don’t say, please treasure and keep them. Don’t take them for granted; such are rare!)
Going back to the scripture in context, what I described above was the exact plan of God when He made man. Besides granting him dominion over everything in Eden, God made man for the express purpose of fellowship. God treasured the fellowship with man so much and that’s why He would visit Adam and Eve daily in the cool of the day; to spend time with them; daily. This is why the Creator of the Universe left His glory daily to join them in the garden. It was His pleasure to be with them. That cordial friendship sadly never lasted long. Disobedience set in, familiarity maybe and the result was the “FALL of MAN” as we read today. If God had given man authority over everything He had made, who knows what else would have been birthed out of the daily cordial fellowship if it was never strained?
Determined to reclaim the lost close fellowship, gave His only begotten son to die for man so that he would enjoy the warmth of man’s fellowship again. (John 3:16). The fact that God never stopped after the unfortunate Eden episode but kept pursuing the fallen and disobedient man tells us how much He valued this relationship. Through Jesus, the Father can now call us friends; not servants. (John 15:15). That which we lost at Eden was restored at Calvary(Luke 19:10). We can now spend time with our all-time friend again. Not only during the noon breeze like Eden but anytime and anywhere and for however long we desire. We can now sit at his feet again and listen, we can enjoy precious moments lost in His presence; just gazing at His beauty again! (Psalm 27:4) Hallelujah!
Before you get excited at the restoration of the beautiful God-man fellowship, what is the state of affairs between you and the Father at this very moment? Have you become a son through Salvation? Have you believed in Jesus and received eternal life?(John 1:12) If you have never, I present this opportunity to you to receive Christ in your heart and be saved.(Romans 10:17). Here and now!
If you are a son already then, how is your fellowship like with the Father today? What is the status of your friendship with Him? Did you talk to your friend today in prayer? Have you spent some quiet time reading His Word? Remember the word should never depart from you. (Joshua 1:8) Can you distinguish His still small voice amidst the many voices all around you? Spending lots of time with Him is what will make you know His voice. (John 10:4) Could you be struggling with cares and worries while you can cast them unto the Lord? (Matt 11:28). Maybe you need to slow down and just talk to God. Does time still fly whenever you are in His presence or lately you can’t believe how slowly an hour drags by when it is only you and Him? Have you drawn closer recently in prayer and fasting so that hear from Him? When are you planning to start trusting Him again and obediently do what He told you to do?
Could the Father be asking “Where are You”? Could His Spirit be longing for that sweet fellowship and quiet moments you always had early in the morning and late in the night when it was just you and Him? Or are you hiding because of sins and you think God is angry with you? Do you feel naked and think the leaves of the forest you have run into can cover your shame? Have you wandered too far and you think that the Father cannot take you in back as a son and if He would maybe just as a servant? (Luke 15:11-32)
Son, the Father longs for your fellowship. He is looking and calling you tenderly back to Himself. He doesn’t want the things you can give Him; your time, your money, gifts, and all. He wants You; yes YOU. He wants to spend time with you again in stillness and quietness. The Holy Spirit longs for your fellowship. If you can draw near and listen, He will speak tenderly to you again, He will instruct you and guide you again, and He will clothe you with the Glory of His presence again. He wants you closer because there are mysteries of the Kingdom that cannot be revealed to you unless you draw near and make His presence your habitation. (Psalm 25:14) Moreover, in His presence is the only place where you can thrive and find true fulfillment. So no matter how cold your heart has been and no matter how far away you might have wandered, He is calling you back home to a place of friendship, fellowship, and intimacy; just as it was in the beginning.
The Father is calling you back tenderly; His arms are still wide open and He deeply longs for you.
Where are you?