And so …

And so … it began.

Wonder how many stories have experienced such a start? First lines are interesting, to say the least. It is good to see where things begin, although not all beginnings fulfill their perceived potential, and that is when the end begins.

Yet, each beginning holds such trembling promise …

Like our beginnings – as people, as writers.

And so …

Not long ago, I dug into the story of Samson. I’m not quite sure how I feel about him. I mean, Samson was listed in the Hall of Faith in Hebrews 11: 32-34

And what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the prophets:  who through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.  (NKJV)

But when you really read the story of Samson (Judges 13-16) the whole faithfulness on man’s part comes into question and we must address the faithfulness of God. I soon realized I had to go back – way back to the beginning – and figure out what had gone so wrong with humankind that we needed God to push us on toward more faith in Him.

And so, in Genesis, it began.

God was there. He made everything. Everything. Then, He made man and woman. He grew a garden with lots of the everything He had made and told man and woman to go and play nice.  Playing nice meant following the rules.

“You can eat of all these nice trees,” God said.

“But not this tree,” God said and pointed to the tree of life.

“And not this tree,” God said and pointed to the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

The man and the woman nodded their heads, and then they went to play in the nice garden with the nice trees.

One day, a snake talked.

And so … it began.

So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings. Genesis 3:6-7 NKJV

What were they thinking?

One bite and they were naked — utterly unclothed and helpless.

One bite and they were ashamed — blushing because their unfaithfulness had been exposed.

One bite and they knew fear — the loss of innocence and security.

One bite, y’all, out of a hundred million other available bites.

As writers, in this new year that has never been before and will never be again, of what will you take and eat?

For me, I have a borrowed cup and a piece of hard-earned bread. I know, it seems like a rather unpopular dish, but it meets my every need. And I know that after just one bite, I’m not going to look down and see that I’m all exposed, and ashamed, and filled with fear.

I’ll be clothed like I’m the daughter of The King.

It is from that place of beginning again –  filled with His holy food and clothed with His righteousness alone – that I will ultimately share.

So will you.

And so … it begins.

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