Decorating our cemetery
I don't know what got you to your cemetery and I don't know what graves you sit before. I know what mine looked like and I sat there for a long time -- what I refer to as the decade of my discontent. Not only did I sit and angrily stare at my tombstones, but I decorated and planted flowers to make it pretty in order to pass the time. Maybe that’s where you are, making paper flowers to decorate the cold and lonely place you reside in, but I know that's not the end of the story.
Genesis 4:25: And Adam knew his wife again, and she bore a son and named him Seth, “For God has appointed another seed for me instead of Abel, whom Cain killed.” 26 And as for Seth, to him also a son was born; and he named him Enosh.[c] Then men began to call on the name of the Lord.
A new seed awaits
God has another seed waiting, an appointment he set before time began --- to bring the promised blessing from your life. Eve may have thought the promise was Cain or Abel and that would redeem her from the fall, but God knows everything. He knew the desolation Cain and Abel would bring to Eve’s life and He knows the desolation you will/would face. He knew the struggles you would have to encounter and that your heart would faint and grow weary. But He has an appointed seed already set. There was a Seth...
You have two choices where you currently reside…
The first choice is to continue sitting in the cemetery for as long as you want. Decorate and plant flowers to hide the stench of death and ignore the passing of time. This place is comfortable, safe and most importantly under your complete control. No one, and I do mean no one, can get you out. It is an act of self will, courage and faith to decide to move out. No prayer over you, no particular book, no person can get you out without your help and your actions. The graves may or may not have been part of your decisions or your consequences, but how long you stay is only your decision. Some people spend their lives staring at the past. It is your grave, your mourning, your process and your decision.
Your second choice is to move out of that place and let the dead bury their dead. Cut ties with Cain, say goodbye to Abel and embrace the seed God has appointed for you. Eve had to decide to hope again, and very practically have sex with her husband in order to move on. It takes HARD WORK and a lot of Jesus. Just like Eve, you will need to be practical as well. I do not want to minimize how hard it is to leave the cemetery. You may need counseling, medication, a new career or a new church in order to move locations. You may need to end the relationship, to cut ties, etc.; but the decision is yours. Prayerfully decide what your heart needs in order to breathe again. Holding Seth, the promise of the Lord, is worth the struggle.
Proverbs 13:12: But a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.
Seth was Eve’s tree of life. God needs you to be encouraged and hope again in Him, despite all the time your heart has failed you, because He has something new; an appointed seed. God reminds us in Isaiah 61:3 that He will:
“console those who mourn in Zion, To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.”
And He will do it.
Deborah Rosa is a therapist in Orlando, Fla., where she has worked with teenage boys who have been convicted of sexual misconduct. She has years of experience working with teens and young adults and holds a master's degree from the Alliance Graduate School of Counseling from Nyack Christian college in New York.