Living in the In-Between!
And God said, "Let there be light" and there was light.
Everything is in place. The land and sea nestle together. Day and night circle the earth. The trees and flowers array themselves in glory. Everything is ready-perfect and unspoiled.
And Adam and Eve lived happily in The Garden of Eden, which was the best part of the entire globe. They did not have to exert themselves to get their food, for everything was aplenty in the Garden of Eden.
God blessed Adam and Eve, saying: “Be fruitful and multiply, cultivate the earth, and control it. Rule over the fish of the sea, and the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth!” Eden was completely good but not completely secure.
The happiness of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden was not to last long.
For, together with them, lived also the Serpent which was shrewder than all the other animals. The Serpent begrudged God’s blessing given to Adam and Eve. He envied them the power to rule over the creatures of the world. He, therefore, devised a scheme by which to make the first human beings fall.
We all know the story. The sin of Adam and Eve belongs to each of us. Their disobedience and shame are ours. Each of us is guilty without exception, though we choke over the association-hiding in the dark-running from the truth of who we are.
God meant the world to be golden. We are meant to be happy. And yet we endure a sickening compulsion to devour, to lie, to break things, to pull things up, to burn things down, and even kill.
God’s intention to dwell with a holy people in a holy land could not be thwarted by human sin.
We are now living in this "In Between". Hoping to one day make it to Heaven where everything will be perfect again. But we are not alone. God is with us and he sent a helper, a comforter, to help guide us while we are here. With His help, we can overcome these compulsions and be the person He meant us to be. We live in a beautiful but broken world. However, our creator made this world and did not desire it or us for brokenness. He destined us for a wonderful life. his intentions for us are good. He cares so much for us that he became one of us. He took our brokenness even to the point of death. His death gave birth to our life-eternal life. He rose from the dead and is recreating our world and invites all of us to be part of it. One day he will restore the earth to its intended beauty and reclaim his family and we will live with him forever.
Through God's Grace, we are saved. Grace' is not a stand-alone virtue.
It is from the fruits of righteousness that men can receive Divine truths, and thus learn virtue. The foundation of 'grace' is righteousness, 'grace' is never independent.
It is just one act of righteousness that is sufficient for all men to be offered grace.
... so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 5:20-21)
Seek righteousness, and grace will become your pillow. Where there is grace, there is rest.
We must have faith to make it through this in-between. Faith’s way of walking is to cast all care upon the Lord, and then to anticipate good results from the worst calamities. Through Faith and righteousness, we will find Heaven again. Heaven is a place where your dreams and memories come together. Everything will be perfect, just like the Garden of Eden.
We will no longer be in the in-Between.