Friday, May 31, 2013

Procedures Scheduled! (And a few other updates)

Wow, lots to talk about today and it's not even 12:30!

1. I heard back from Mayo today (which is AWESOME since I was originally told I wouldn't hear from them until next week). So here's the breakdown:
       My check-in time for my ERCP (endoscopy) and colonoscopy is 11:15 on Monday morning. I will have the endoscopy first, and then while I'm still under anesthesia they'll go ahead and wheel me into another room and do a colonoscopy.
       A few hours after my procedure (around 3) I'll meet with the surgeon who is doing my endoscopy. I received a voicemail from my PSC doctor this morning and he told me that the surgeon who will be working on me is his favorite and will do a very good job (Praise the Lord! How amazing is that?).
      After I meet with the surgeon and debrief with him I will meet with my UC doctor and debrief about what was found in my colon to talk about whether a colectomy is imminent or not and what that will also look like.
       I don't have any appointments scheduled on Tuesday, but I will return to Mayo on Wednesday afternoon to talk to my PSC doctors (Dr. Tabibian and Dr. Talwalker).
        I'm so happy that all of this is finally happening! It will be so good to have some actual answers and plans about everything. Monday and Wednesday are going to be very big days for us, so your prayers are most definitely appreciated! We are looking forward to know what's happening, especially with the possibility of a colectomy looming over us.

2. About a month or so ago I posted about how I recently got into photography. I contacted our wedding photographer to talk about a possible apprenticeship with her, and was contacted today about working with her and learning from her when we move! I'm so excited about the possibility of making photography a career. I can really see myself doing something like that long-term, and I'm really excited about learning more and refining my skills. Yay!

3. Eric received calls from TWO recruiters that he's been in contact with today for Wells Fargo. They've been interested in talking with him and there may be a phone interview in there somewhere. For all of you who don't know, Eric and I are moving to Colorado mid-July (which is why I contacted our wedding photographer), and the only moving piece right now is Eric's job. He's currently looking for a possible promotion right now, but if that doesn't happen we have other options for him to get a job within Wells Fargo which is a really nice thing (We really like that company). So hopefully when Eric talks to the recruiters they will have good news about job openings and options for us in the Denver area!

4. This may not sound like a big deal, but our apartment also got shown to someone today! Since we are moving in the middle of the month, we currently will have to pay for 2 weeks that we will not be in the apartment. Because of this, we are really praying that someone rents the apartment right after we move so that we can use the extra money from rent for our actual move. Having our apartment shown is a really good sign and definitely gives us hope!

OKAY. So. Here are some praises and prayer requests:

Praise: Mayo got back to me much more quickly than we anticipated, and that we'll finally get the ball rolling on these procedures!

Praise: Things really seem to be falling right into place for our move to Colorado. Even though it will be difficult to leave Minnesota, it really seems like Colorado is exactly where God wants us to be right now.

Request: Wisdom and steady hands for the surgeons on Monday and that we will have good news as far as a colectomy goes and that they will hopefully be able to clear the blockage that is in my liver bile duct.

Request: Patience as we continue on this journey. I'm so excited to continue moving this process along, but I know there will still be bumps and difficulties along the way. I know that some of the news we may receive next week could be difficult, and I'm trying to prepare myself for that.

In the end of everything, God is sovereign and He has a plan and purpose for everything that He is orchestrating. It is absolutely obvious that God is at the center of ALL OF THIS, and even though He's allowing me to face these difficulties, He has Eric and I right where we're supposed to be. Please pray that we will continue to trust Him and look to Him through everything.

Thank you, friends! You all are so wonderful, and I'm so thankful for each and every one of you. :)

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Short Update

Hi Everyone -

This is just a short update because I talked to Mayo today. Apparently my other hospital hadn't gotten the records to them last week, so they can't schedule an appointment yet for my tests. I called the other hospital and I'm not exactly sure what happened with the records, but the woman who helped me said that she would gather the records if they still had them and send them to Mayo's pathology clinic. SO. All that to say... I should hopefully hear from them early next week. I guess it's possible for me to hear from Mayo tomorrow, but they have to go over all the details from my last procedure and I was told that should take a few days.

Thanks again for all your prayers, and I'll let you all know when I have a set date for my tests!

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Waiting Game.

I think I have to practice the art of patience during this time with my health. My doctors told me last week that I should expect a call from them to set up the tests early this week (which I expected to be yesterday, but didn't get a call). I'm really hoping they call today, but it may not happen. As I'm sitting here just waiting for my phone to ring, I'm realizing that this may be something that continues happening - especially if I have to get surgery. I know that I need to be patient and wait for them, but it's so hard to do when I'm so ready to get everything started.

It's very difficult knowing that I'm not in control. I can do as much as I can, but ultimately it's the responsibility of my two hospitals to be in communication with each other and for Mayo to get results and paperwork they need in order to schedule my endoscopy. It's so incredibly hard to wait on them. I know that Mayo is efficient and will do whatever they need to in order to get me in as soon as possible, but the waiting game is definitely rough. I keep having this fear that somehow I fell through the cracks and they forgot about me. When I actually sit and think about it I know this isn't the case, but it's easy to think that way when you don't know what's going to happen.

Anyway, those are just my thoughts for the day. Sitting around and waiting for a phone call is tough. I don't want to just sit at home, but I also don't want to be out and about and end up missing the call. Oy.

Your continued prayers for trust and peace are greatly appreciated! Thank you, friends.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Our God is Powerful!

Psalm 29

Ascribe to the LORD, O heavenly beings,
ascribe to the LORD glory and strength.
Ascribe to the LORD the glory due His name;
worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness.

The voice of the LORD is over the waters;
the God of glory thunders,
the LORD, over many waters.
The voice of the LORD is powerful;
the voice of the LORD is full of majesty.

The voice of the LORD breaks the cedars;
the LORD breaks the cedars of Lebanon.
He makes Lebanon to skip like a calf,
and Sirion like a young wild ox.

The voice of the LORD flashes forth flames of fire.
The voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness;
the LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.

The voice of the LORD makes the deer give birth
and strips the forests bare,
and in His temple all cry, "Glory!"

The LORD sits enthroned over the flood;
the LORD sits enthroned as king forever.
May the LORD give strength to His people!
May the LORD bless His people with peace!

Right now in my quiet times I'm reading through the book of Psalms. Especially with where I'm at right now, the Psalms are so incredibly encouraging and uplifting. They remind me of God's love, comfort, and sovereignty, and I'm so glad about that.

This morning I read through Psalm 29 (which was posted above), and was deeply reminded of God's power. Our God is not some weak god who requires us to do something for him in order for him to do something awesome. Instead, our God is able to do anything. Going through all of my health junk, it is such a comfort to be reminded that my God has the ability to do whatever He wants. He may not choose to do the things I would like Him to do (ex. heal my diseases), but I know that He has an ultimate plan and that He has every ability to take care of me in the midst of my trials.

We heard two pieces of good news from our trip to Mayo and when we came home last week that reminded me of God's power: my blood tests were completely normal and even showed me to be very healthy, and we received a letter back from our hospital telling us we were accepted into the Financial Assistance Program which will GREATLY reduce our medical bills! Praise God!

I am beyond grateful for the power of God in my life. Though He allows me to go though these trials, I know that He is beside me every step of the way, comforting me with His love and His peace that surpasses all understanding. I don't know what the future holds, but I do know that I serve an all-powerful God who knows exactly what is going to happen and will take care of me no matter what. What a supreme, supreme comfort that is. Praise God for His power and majesty.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Back from First Trip to Mayo!

Hello, everyone!

Eric and I just got back a few minutes ago from our first trip to Mayo Clinic. First of all, this place is AMAZING. I'm not even kidding - it's incredible. Everyone there was so incredibly kind, understanding, supportive, and helpful. They all wanted to do the best thing possible for me and went out of their way to make me feel comfortable.

When we arrived on Wednesday morning, the first thing I needed to do was get bloodwork done. When we were down there, we saw just how efficient they were! They had so many people working, and when we were talking to the guy drawing my blood he said that they actually draw blood from about a thousand people a day. WOW. They even have a "blood conveyor belt" (that Eric loved) that they would open the door to and put the tubes on to send to the lab. Incredibly, incredibly efficient.

After I had my blood drawn we had a few hours to kill so we walked through the subway and skyway system. The Mayo campus is HUGE. It was really awesome to experience. There are pianos in every major building where I'm pretty sure anyone can play if they want to. We heard employees and non-employees play and sing - one employee sang "I Love You (For Sentimental Reasons)", and it was AMAZING. I was so impressed, and I really feel like they hit the nail on the head with putting those pianos in there so people feel comfortable and soothed. Music is a really wonderful thing, so I was delighted to see that there was always someone playing and singing.

In the afternoon on Wednesday we met with both my doctors for my PSC (Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis). The first doctor told me that my bloodwork came back completely normal which was INCREDIBLE. Praise God! This was such a blessing. It's so great to know that I'm "healthy" even though I have these two ridiculous diseases. I was originally scheduled to have a bone density test that day and an ultrasound on Thursday, but they ended up cancelling those because they didn't think they were important tests to do. My doctor also didn't want to do unnecessary tests where we would have to spend more money which was a huge blessing as well and made me like Mayo even more! When I told them about how I want to possibly get a colectomy they decided to make an appointment for me to see the IBD (Irritable Bowel Disease) specialists because they were the experts. Here's a funny thing, though - my doctors are EXPERTS in PSC. Like, it's their life's work. But they also know a lot about UC (Ulcerative Colitis). In fact, one of my doctors had just gotten back the night previously from a conference dedicated to UC. Incredible!

So then the last appointment I had was on Thursday morning with the IBD specialist, and she was awesome! We talked a lot about my disease, and she even gave me hope that there is a small chance that they may be able to salvage part of my colon. This would be INCREDIBLE because if they could do that I would only have to have one surgery instead of two, I wouldn't need to have an ostomy bag, AND it wouldn't affect my fertility AT ALL (a full colectomy would reduce my fertility by 50%).

So here's the plan right now:

Unfortunately my hospital didn't send my records and test results to Mayo like they were supposed to, so Mayo needs to read the slides from my last endoscopy and MRI, and then they're going to schedule me for another endoscopy (and as my doctor said, they'll probably just clear the blockage and put a stint in while they're in there... and he said this like it was super easy for them to do), and then I'm supposed to call the IBD specialists to schedule a colonoscopy either right before or right after the endoscopy - that way I'll only have to do one prep instead of two.

All that being said, here are some things you can be praying for:

1. That the doctors call me quickly in order to schedule a colonoscopy and endoscopy so we can get this show on the road.

2. Steady hands while the surgeons are clearing my blockage and putting a stint in - the ducts are incredibly small and will require a lot of finesse, but it sounds like all of these surgeons are absolute pros and do this all the time (Praise God!).

3. Wisdom for the IBD specialists and Eric and myself to know what the right course of action is as far as a colectomy is concerned. There could be a few reasons to wait to have one, but if I'm showing multi-focal dysplasia (high risk for cancer in multiple areas) or if the dysplasia is in a flat part of the colon instead of just a polyp, then that will be a sure-fire sign that I need to get my colon out ASAP. So please, please be praying for clarity and wisdom for us.

4. Peace and patience. I'm extremely ready to get everything started, and it's hard to wait for the doctors. I know that Mayo Clinic is the best place for me to be at, but it's still nerve-wracking to know when things are going to get done and what's going to happen. I'm really ready just to do what we need to.

Thank you so much to all of my wonderful supporters - you are such a blessing to me! For all of you who don't know, I deactivated my Facebook account for a while. It won't be for long, but I need to severely cut back on my use of that site. It was really getting out of control for a while, and I need to refocus my priorities and actually become productive during the day. So I'll be updating my blog more often, so continue checking back for updates! At the bottom of the page you can also sign up to have my posts sent to your email if that will make it easier for you. I would also love to hear from you all, so please let me know you were here by posting a little something - even something about how YOU are doing, because I want to know how all of you are as well! :)

Thanks again, and hope you all have a wonderfully blessed day. :)

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Mayo Clinic Tomorrow - Prayer Requests!

Hello, friends! Thank you so much for stopping by. As I head to Mayo Clinic early tomorrow morning, I ask that you pray with and for me on a few things:

1. Wisdom. 

This may seem like a no-brainer, but please pray for wisdom for Eric and myself as well as the doctors so that we all may know the proper course of action to take during this time. At the moment I'm planning on pushing for a colectomy sooner rather than later, but it's possible that the doctors won't want to do that right away, and I need to be okay with that - if that's the decision that's made. I don't anticipate that they will disagree about having a colectomy done right away, but I just want the right decisions to be made in the right time.

2. Patience.

I know, I know. The age-old saying is never to pray for patience, but I'm going to anyway. I want my colon out as soon as possible, but it may be that I can't have it out for a while. Please pray that I will be patient enough to wait for that and not grumble the entire time. Please also pray that the doctors will be patient with me through my anxiety and fears (since it's Mayo I'm not really worried about that, but still... good to pray for), and that I'll be patient with the doctors even if I disagree with them.

3. Safety.

I'm not sure yet what procedures I'll be going through in the next couple of days, but I'm guessing at least one of them will be an endoscopy. With my PSC (Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis), it's a more delicate process than normal because they have to navigate their way through the ducts of my liver, and maybe even clear the blockage that's there. It will definitely take some finesse on their part, so please pray for steady hands throughout everything (and pray for safety for whenever I have my colectomy).

4. Healing.

This is a bold prayer that I have been praying for a while, and would love if you would join with me. I know that the Lord has His own purposes and He may very well choose not to heal me from these diseases but will allow me to walk through these difficult times, but I don't think it's wrong to pray that He will work a miracle in me. I know that He is fully capable of healing me (He is God, after all), but I also know that most often the Lord works in and through afflictions instead of taking us out of those trials. If He wants me to fully walk through this trial and this valley then I will, but I will still pray for healing, believing that He has every ability to do so. Please join me in this bold prayer.

5. Trust.

Please, please, PLEASE pray for trust. If you don't pray anything else for me, please pray that Eric and I will trust that the Lord has us in the palm of His hand, and that He knows what He's doing. I'm not going to lie - I'm nervous about what the future holds, and I've had a difficult time coming to grips with the fact that the plans I had for my life are changing and I may not be able to do all the things I wanted to (at least not right now). Please pray that Eric and I will trust that whatever happens, the Lord is sovereign in all things.

6. Unity.

Lastly, please pray for unity between Eric and me. All of this junk that's going on has really brought us closer together, but I know there are going to be days when we're both grumpy because of everything going on. Please pray that we will be unified in whatever decisions we have to make, that we will be able to clearly communicate with each other, and most importantly that we will put Christ at the center of every thought and every decision we make. Eric has already been so wonderful in continually pointing me to Christ, and I thank God for that. Please pray that we will both continue to do that in the future.

Thank you so much for your prayers, friends! They are deeply felt and greatly appreciated. Love all of you, and I will definitely keep everyone updated on what we find out from Mayo!

PS - A HUGE thank-you to Rick who sent me a really nice card yesterday. You have perfect timing! I definitely needed something right before Mayo. Miss our daily talks at Caribou as well!

Friday, May 10, 2013


Oh, that three-letter word… sin. What does sin look like? Is sin the physical act of something against God’s commands? Is it the thought process one goes through before the actual sin itself? Does God rank sins? If not, then why do we like to rank them? These are all questions that I’ve asked throughout my life, and I’m not sure I have all the answers to.

When I look at situation that Eve was in and how the deception occurred with the Serpent, I begin to wonder when the sin actually took place. Because honestly, we know that she didn’t just make a “snap” decision to eat the fruit, but she had to mull it over and consciously make the decision over at least some period of time. Now, this is not to say that as soon as we have the temptation to sin we have already sinned, but it seems as though Eve wasn’t even fighting off her temptation. She just allowed the Serpent’s words to sink in further to deceive her into questioning God’s motives. I tend to lean more towards the idea that the sin took place before she actually ate the fruit.

If that’s the case, then this makes our thought lives that much more important. Are we doing as Paul says in Philippians 4:8 and thinking about “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, and whatever is commendable”? How much are we actually fighting off temptation instead of just allowing it to permeate our hearts and minds and causing us to sin? I personally don’t spend nearly as much energy as I should fighting off temptation – gossip is a good example of that. It is so, so incredibly easy to get sucked into gossip and I have fallen into that trap so many times. It’s easy to talk poorly of others so we may feel better about ourselves.

This leads me into another question. Have you ever ranked your sin? Have you ever talked poorly about someone, cheated on a test, lied to a friend, and then thought, “Well, at least I didn’t do [insert your excuse here]…” Maybe I’m the only one, but I have done this so many times. I try and make my sins seem smaller than they really are in order to feel better about myself, but the fact of the matter is I Sinned. Period. There is no excuse. There is no “making myself feel better.” I have wronged the Lord, and there’s no way around that. Did you know that in the verses in the Bible where it talks about the sins God hates (both Old and New Testaments) “gossip” is included among murder and adultery? That “disobedience to parents” is in there with slander and debauchery? That throws a wrench into all of my plans of trying to make myself feel better for only telling a “white lie” to someone.

Friends, we are all guilty of sin. Every single one of us. Romans 3:23 says “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” The sin here isn’t specified. This is sin in general. So that test you cheated on, that white lie you told… it’s all sin. We are all culpable. We are all sinners. But we have hope, friends (and I’ll talk about this more in a couple posts). Directly after that verse saying we have all sinned, Paul says, “and [they] are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith.” We have hope! We can have salvation through Christ Jesus our Lord! Amen and Amen.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


I struggle with contentment on a daily basis. Through my illnesses it’s easy to be discontent and wonder why God would put me in this situation and allow others to have seemingly “easy” lives. I become jealous of others who are healthy, active, have jobs and children while I sit here just waiting for the next doctor’s appointment. However, as I look at Eve, I see that even she became discontent in her situation, even though she was in absolute perfection.

She wasn’t satisfied with what God had given her. There was only one tree she couldn’t eat from – she and her husband were free to eat and do whatever else they wanted, but in her selfishness she was not content and had to have the one thing God had forbidden her to have. As I write this I’m given a huge reality check – Eve was in the Garden of Eden. She was in perfection. She actually walked with God. And yet… She was still discontent.

And then the realization hits – contentment does not come from our situations, from the possessions that we have, from the people in our lives, or even the amount of time spent with God. Contentment is a conscious decision. Eve didn’t choose to be content in her situation. Instead, she chose the contrary – she chose not to be satisfied with every other tree the Lord had given her to eat from, and had to have the one thing He put out of her reach.

So as we look at others’ lives, let us not make the mistake of thinking, “Oh, if I just had this…” or “Oh, if I could only do this…” or “If I only had a wife/husband…” Instead, let us make a conscious decision to be content with whatever God has given us. Yes, God has allowed me to struggle with illness. I don’t know why He gave this to me, I don’t know why He chose me to go through this instead of someone else, but the fact of the matter is that this is what He has given me. This is my life. And no matter how hard it is, it is beautiful simply because God has given me life. And not just life – God has given me an abundant life. I have a family who loves me, friends who care about me, all my physical needs taken care of, and I have a husband who, in his own words, would give his life for me if it meant I could be healthy. I am immensely blessed despite the difficult circumstances I am facing.

Everyone has some kind of cross to bear. This is not to downplay anything that anyone must go through, but hopefully this puts in perspective the thoughts of envy and jealousy we may have towards another person’s seemingly “perfect” or “easy” life. We were not made to compare ourselves to others, but to live the life God has given us each specifically. He has a greater purpose for everything that He does, regardless of what that is. We may face intense trials – death, rape, addiction, miscarriages, illnesses, injuries, etc. – and we may not ever receive the answers of why God allows us to go through those things. But we have hope in knowing that God has a greater purpose for everything He does which is for our good and His ultimate glory. Our “good” may not mean that we have temporary happiness, but maybe it brings us deeper joy in knowing Him. Maybe it slowly chisels us down to be closer to His likeness. Again, we may never know, but we have hope from Romans 8:28 – “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”

Saturday, May 4, 2013


Have you ever been deceived by someone? Have you ever felt the pain of realizing you were deceived? As many times as I have been deceived by people in the past I can’t imagine the kind of pain Adam and Eve endured when they realized they had been deceived by the Serpent. The Bible talks about the Serpent being “more crafty than any other wild beast the LORD God had made.” He knew exactly what he was doing when he talked with Eve. He knew exactly how to craft it so she would eat the forbidden fruit.

Eve gave in to her physical desires without much thought (it seems) to the consequences. She doesn’t even seem to talk things over with Adam at all. As much as I want that first sin to have been a struggle, it seems that Eve gave everything up so easily. She disagreed with the Serpent once, but only about something God had said and even in her argument she misremembered God’s words. Of course, I’m not one to judge – too often I give in to my sinful desires without a fight as well.So how can we guard against this? We know that Satan comes to steal, kill, and destroy. We know this. We know that he wants to keep us as far away from a close relationship with the Lord as possible. In the New Testament we are implored to test the spirits to see whether they are from God. John talks about this in 1 John 4:1-3a – “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
Regardless of who I personally believe are false prophets in this world, it is important for every believer to always be on guard and be mindful of what they are told and taught from different people who proclaim to be Christ-followers. It is far too easy to be deceived and start believing a certain theology because it’s what we are told instead of actually processing through it and deciding whether it is truth or not.
In our postmodern age, American Christianity is incredibly lazy. We take our beliefs from so many different avenues – news sites, music, movies, television shows, televangelists, Facebook, and even Twitter. It is of utmost importance that this kind of behavior stops. 1 Peter 3:15 says clearly, “…but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect.” We must be able to give a reason for the beliefs that we hold to. It is not acceptable to blindly believe what we were taught when we were young, what we are told by the media or even by those around us – we must be able to think critically about what we are taught and decide if it is truth or not.

Deception begins with the failure to think critically about all the information that we receive on a daily basis. Read Scripture, talk with those you trust and know to be wise and true Christ-followers, and decide for yourself what you believe instead of following someone’s beliefs just because it “sounds good” or “makes sense.” Why do you believe what you do? Why does what that person says make sense? Why do you follow this person’s teachings? Why are they teaching what they do? These are all incredibly important questions to ask so we are not sucked in to false doctrine and false belief systems. Christianity’s main tenant is that Christ, the Son of God, died for our sins on the cross and was raised again on the third day – without His sacrifice we have no hope of salvation. However, Christianity is also about so much more than that. We cannot just be satisfied with that – we must strive for knowledge and truth so we can grow into a deeper relationship with Christ and love Him more. I could not even attempt to love Christ more if I didn’t care whether what I believe about Him was true or not. So then, let us strive for knowledge and truth so we may have a more intimate relationship with our Savior and so we may have the ability to grow more in His likeness every day.

Friday, May 3, 2013


In my next few blog posts, I’m going to cover some of the themes of Genesis 3:1-7 (this was for my final project for my Genesis class), but before I do, I want to talk about Adam and Eve in the garden, and the meaning behind the fact that they were naked and unashamed. I remember when I was a kid and I read this story I thought, “Ew, gross!” But now that I am older and married (and hopefully a little more mature), I see the beauty in this small phrase.
 When Adam and Eve were in the garden, they were completely at peace. They walked with God – think about that. They actually… walked… with God. They didn’t just pray to Him, they didn’t just hear His voice… no. They had such an intimate communion with God that they walked with Him “in the cool of the day.” How amazing is that? Adam and Eve had everything they could ever need, and God provided it for them. Not only that, but they also had a blessed intimate communion with each other. They were so vulnerable with one another, so unashamed of themselves that they were naked. All the time. Think about the kind of intimacy that is necessary in order to feel safe being naked (even emotionally) in front of another person. It’s a scary thing to be that vulnerable. Think of the last time that you poured your heart out to another person – it was scary, wasn’t it? Were you scared to be rejected for showing who you are, or did you have complete faith and trust in that person not to judge you?
Even though I’m married and I have a wonderful husband, being vulnerable in any sense is still scary. There’s still a part of me that doesn’t want to open up to him or have that intimacy, because that closeness opens the possibility for rejection. And then I think of Adam and Eve, before the whole mess of sin entered the world. They didn’t have those kinds of fears. In fact, they didn’t even know what fear or rejection was! Wow. I look at where they were at and wonder how in the world they could be willing to give all of that up. Perfect intimacy and communion with one another and most importantly, with the God of the universe.
 Think about that for a tiny minute. The God of the universe. God. Yahweh. The creator of all things. He walked with them. They had a real relationship with Him where they could dialogue with Him. They didn’t have to wonder if He was listening, they didn’t have doubts whether He existed… none of that. They had the exact relationship with God that every growing Christian longs for. And they gave it all up for a piece of fruit and their selfish and sinful desires to be like God. I like to think that I would do things differently if I were in the garden, but maybe not. Maybe I only say that because I know the pain and destruction that sin caused on the entire human race, and I wish it could be done over again.
 Anyway, my next few blogs will be on the different themes of Genesis 3:1-7 and how we can apply those things to our daily lives. Hope you enjoy and are encouraged and challenged by them.