Before they hid from God in fear . . .
Before they took hold of the forbidden fruit . . .
Before they changed the cosmos with their choice . . .
Adam must have been thrilled to share the beauty of the garden with Eve.
Taking her by the hand, Adam must have delighted in showing Eve the Pishon River as it twisted through the garden, rushing past gold-filled land (Genesis 2:11).
I wonder if Eve smiled as Adam explained to her the names he had given each animal.
Time together. Just the two of them. And then to have their Creator join them at times, talking about their day, enjoying new discoveries in the garden.
Years later, I wonder how often Adam and Eve reminisced about the days they shared in Eden.
Did they tell their boys stories of what it was like there?
Or were they too busy toiling the land, working for the food they needed from the next harvest?
Had the sin that separated them from their early days also distanced them from each other?
None of us have perfect memories of a time gone past, for we are all on this side of Eden. But most of us can remember our early courtship, a time filled with sweet wondering and long walks. How often do we pause from the rush of daily toiling? How often do we choose stillness and quietude, taking the time to be together? It never happens on its own. It takes intentionality. Purpose.
For our first date, just the two of us, Jeff took me hiking on a trail just north of Pasadena. For Los Angeles County, it's surprisingly beautiful there, tucked away beyond the city, nestled against the foothills. The wooded path - padded with soft earth and draped with evergreen on each side - leads to a waterfall. The hush of the water calls from a distance.
Sometimes I think about that waterfall. I think about the hike. The rocks we balanced across. The feet we dangled in chilled water.
It's been more than a decade now. More than. We've been back a couple of times. Once with a baby wrapped snug against his chest. The sound of bees nearby made us flee. Such walks were no longer as easy as they once were.
But I have been thinking about that hike lately. I'd like to see it again. Is it the same as I remember?
For our marriage, and for any marriage, I think it's important to trace those early steps, to remember. And most importantly of all, to invite our Creator to walk with us, both there and then, and here and now.