It included creating a perfect world, perfect living creatures, perfect food, perfect environment and a perfect man with whom to commune. Included in His plan was to create a perfect woman for His perfect man, and enjoy the goodness of all He made. It was perfect in every way.
Of course, if we believe God knew ahead of the fact it would all come crashing down with Adam and Eve’s disobedience in their perfect garden, we have to accept that even in the face of all He knew would happen, He did not abandon man or the plan altogether.
Or maybe He even knew ahead of time His original plan would fail. After all, He did design man with a free will. Paradoxical as it is, He still chose to allow His creation to continue–albeit greatly altered.
But is it really?
Would I, as a mere human, want to change the course of my life if I could see ahead? If I could see ahead horrible events in my future, would I chose not to exist at all?
If I could know beforehand that I would lose a child to some debilitating, painful disease, would I choose not to birth that child into the world considering the good that often comes through such agonizing hardship? Maybe not. But then I don’t really know and I doubt anyone else does either–even if they think or say they do.
If I could know ahead of the fact that the man I chose to marry would be called into war and die an untimely death, would I still have chosen to marry him?
Would I, if I could foresee my future spelled ongoing tragedy, loss, sorrow and constant struggle, choose not to born? Though I can not say for absolute certain having not experienced such, I think I would still choose to be.
Part of me cannot even fathom God knowing all that would be… and yet… letting it be.
But there’s another part of me that can.
On an almost infinitely smaller scale, I can imagine that if the attributes God created in man–in me: a longing to love and be loved, compassion, empathy, need for companionship, desire to please, appreciation for beauty, that non-substitutable familial bond, etc. etc. were the characteristics in Himself he yearned to reproduce in living beings he called His “children”, I can see how he’d want offspring. Isn’t that why most of us want children? To reproduce and enjoy the good, naturally-occurring genetic modifications we desire in ourselves?
Would I have chosen not to include my 19 year old cousin, Jim, in my life If I could see ahead that he would be violently, tragically killed in a car accident, leaving behind a 17 year-old adoring, devastated bride of only 2 weeks to-the-hour he was killed? I would have to say, no. It was worth having him in my life, even with the agony of losing him… even if only for those short 19 years. Knowing him was a bright memory in my life, and losing him made me a more sensitive person.
It’s a feeble comparison, but it’s enough for me to get a tiny grasp on what might have been in the mind of God when he continued with his plan to create man–even knowing all he knew.
It’s a legitimate, probing question and one often pondered.
So God’s Perfect Plan A didn’t quite work out for Him as He… well...He planned. But instead of trashing the whole idea altogether, He saw fit–maybe it even pleased him…
to settle for the ‘Plan B‘ He obviously crafted as the substitute. Perhaps that was one (of the many) prices He paid for allowing man a free will.
Perhaps. But, I don’t have to know for sure. Simply contemplating the possibility is strangely comforting in the aftermath of my own failures.
When my husband and I first married, I can’t say that we had a ‘PLAN’per se– other than the obvious– to get married, get a place to live and eventually have kids. That was enough…at first.
But later on, as we matured and began having children– in rapid succession– our whole perspective on life changed, then heightened with our move to Oklahoma.
Along with the change to a new state and home came many, many other changes. Our way of ‘doing church‘ changed. Our community of family changed. Our values changed. Our core beliefs changed. Our standards changed. Our goals changed. And most significantly?
Our influences changed.
It was through those influences that we began formulating a ‘plan’ for rearing ‘ideal’ children and becoming an ‘ideal’ family.
We literally were surrounded by families who claimed and appeared to have discovered the secret to bringing up the ‘Godly seed’. What dedicated, novice, Christian parent wouldn’t want that?
These people utilized very specific, no-fault formulas for accomplishing that end and as far as we could tell, the ‘proof of the pudding was in the making’. Their ‘formulas’ were working and we were the all-wondering eyes and earsrecruits.
So we began incorporating those formulas–little by little– into our child-rearing practices with high and lofty expectations.
And the process for our own ‘Plan A’ venture was born.
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