We’re all familiar with the, “Garden of Eden” story of how our fore-parents sinned. Later, as I matured and my belief in God became deeper, I questioned why an all-knowing God would question Adam and Eve by asking, “Where are you?” if He knows everything. Not just “all knowing” but being everywhere, too, would He not also be where they are? Then, why the question, “Where are you?”
We need to understand God does not ask questions for His benefit. He was not wondering where Adam and Eve were physically located. He knew the answer. He wanted them to acknowledge where they were in relation to Him. Previously, because of their relationship, there was a particular time of the day they’d enjoy fellowshipping and suddenly something has changed. Certainly it was not the location, nor time, nor God; but, the question is quite profound because God was going for the core reasoning of, “where are you in relation to Me?”
What has happened to you, in your life, which as prevented us from meeting as we normally have done? I have not changed, so the change is within you; so, tell Me what it is.” You cannot provide God with help to questions He already knows the answer, but He requires us to tell Him where we are, thereby our own acknowledging we are not where we want to be. Only then are we able to receive the help to return to the place we long to be, in fellowship with Him.
God is asking you, today, as you sit in your cell, “Where are you in relation to Me?” Let’s complete the word, “relation” and broaden its true meaning, “relationship”. God is wanting the same with you as He had with Adam and Eve. A relationship. He is interested in every detail of your life. He is involved with you and want you to be involved with Him. What are some of the actions necessary to develop a relationship? If you consider what it was like when you met someone, the process is identical:
Remember when you met that special person, how you wished to spend as much time as possible with them? How you often were made to go to your own home? because you hadn’t the sense to know when it was time to go, so you had to be dis-invited when it was too late and your presence was no longer welcomed? The same applies to God. He wants you to spend time with Him. I can assure you in this type of relationship you will never be asked to leave for He desires you to be in His presence for as much as you would like.
While in His presence and spending time, you have to be willing to speak your mind and heart. He wants to hear from you as often as you’re willing to speak to Him, and, this is key: to listen to Him. How long would that special someone you wish to know and love, how long would that relationship last if you spent five to ten minutes a day speaking with them? It wouldn’t develop at all, nor does our relationship with God if all you are offering are prayers of that length of time. Some people confess, “I don’t know how to pray. I don’t know what to say.” Well, how would you talk to that special one? Is not God special, too, and you don’t know how to do it!
Whether in the classroom, office or walking down the street, you’re thinking about the person you now hold special to your life. What of God? What are your thoughts? Do you have a “thought life?” Are you so filled with many activities where there’s no time to think about Him? Are you around with others who have little or no association with Him, it robs you of the precious time afforded to think, to think about Him?
What are you doing to engender a loving relationship with Him? I can tell you recreation, the yard, television, playing cards, chess or whatever other meaningless time-consuming, wasteful practices will steal the activity you could be enjoying with Him. If there are no services or chapel available, how about find those who believe and develop your own! If nothing else, by sitting on your own bunk with a book like this, or your Bible, can be enough activity which will be productive and valuable in maintaining a relationship with Him.
You have been placed in a wonderful position to not have to concern yourself with life-sustaining activities like working, shopping or family requirements to begin to develop a relationship with your Creator. By doing so, we are able to determine, with His help, our purpose for being, since He’s the One who designed you and has determined why you are here. Do not leave, or die, without knowing your purpose, and we’ll address the subject of purpose in a later chapter.
No one likes the idea of being lost. I’ve experienced the feeling and it’s very uncomfortable especially when you need to be somewhere at a certain time. You are on God’s clock, whether you know it or not, and it is His purpose to have you arrive at the stated and determined appointment, at the right time, but it will begin by first knowing, “where you are”, so you will not have to be asked, “where are you?”