Fig leaves are beautiful — they’re also rather large in comparison to other leaves. But in my estimation, not large enough to cover up parts of me (physically or emotionally).
At that moment their eyes were opened, and they suddenly felt shame at their nakedness. So they sewed fig leaves together to cover themselves. Genesis 3:7 NLT
My mind wanders when I read this verse — as a woman, I can only imagine the horror and shock that must have coursed through Eve’s veins when the realization struck that she was in her birthday suit. (Kind of like pulling on that old swimsuit from several years ago, and then taking that first glance in the mirror to see …) I think of how panic and fear flooded her mind and Adam’s as they sought to figure out what to do, and then how to do it.
Let’s remember the landscape here, Girlfriend — they’re both in the most luscious and luxurious Garden in all Creation, surrounded by an amazing abundance of foliage and vegetation. I can only dream that it was beyond any conceivable tropical paradise. But in the midst of all this tremendous beauty, sin slithered in and wreaked havoc.
The two most blessed humans on the entire planet just committed the unthinkable and were now conspiring to cover up their sin — using fig leaves.
I hail from a lineage of sewing masters in my family, so I was schooled in the art of seamstress artistry before home economics entered the picture in middle school. I’ve created a fair share of garments so I can appreciate the workmanship that goes into well-made clothing.
When I read about Adam and Eve sewing fig leaves as makeshift clothing, my mind goes all over the place! Eve must have been losing her mind trying to gather up enough of what she thought would suffice to conceal her body parts. Between the two of them, that fig tree may have been barren by the time they were done plucking its branches.
Ok, so now they’ve gathered their supposed ‘materials,’ how do they connect, weave, braid, lace, (possibly extracted the sap from the figs themselves to glue the leaves together) … oh my goodness! And then they hear GOD’s footsteps and He’s calling their names …
Girlfriend, have you ever attempted to fig leaf an incident in your life that was the result of sin? We all do it — shame, embarrassment, humiliation — they all egg us on to get those leaves sewn in a hurry. We think that if we act fast enough, no one will detect or suspect anything unusual. Until maybe the sticky sap from the figs starts to ooze and drip. And if we overlooked any details, our cover up may start to fall apart at the seams. Due to the exposure, the leaves may even begin to wither and disintegrate. And then of course, the inevitable happens — GOD calls us out by name.
Can anyone hide from me in a secret place? Am I not everywhere in all the heavens and earth?” says the Lord. Jeremiah 23:24 NLT
Seriously, Sister, it’s almost comical to think that we think we can hide ourselves from the eyes of GOD. We can rationalize all we want and humanly reason until we are blue in the face — but it will not change the facts of our situation. Whether our fig leaves are in the form of manufactured ‘distractions’ to try to erase the footprints of the wayward path we took, or to point to another source (or person) in the form of blame to throw off the scent of where we’ve been, it’s all a fail.
I hear you — the humiliation of the financial devastation would bring you embarrassment if your peers found out about your irresponsible spending habits. Yes, it’s painful to admit that poor choices led to deception in relationships and now you’re confronted with evidence that reveals unfaithfulness in your marriage. The temptation to achieve that professional status by harmlessly altering ‘tiny’ data that could go undetected seemed plausible, but you were found out and now not only face losing your job but legal action is knocking at your door. Stresses both at home and at work have tipped you into addictive behaviors to anesthetize the pain and to escape the dread of dealing with all the commotion.
Shame and embarrassment will do that to you. Fear of exposure and being found out, possibly being ostracized, judged and disowned by friends and family. I’ve cried those tears. And some folks I know have shed and shared theirs with me. But I must say, the healing begins after the repentance.
When GOD was calling out to Adam and Eve after their sin, it’s not because He didn’t know where they were. Yes, the two attempted to hide themselves.
But the LORD God called to Adam, and said to him, “Where are you?” He said, “I heard the sound of You [walking] in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid myself.” Genesis 3:9-10. AMP
Think on that for a moment — first the sin then the hiding. The very instant that we realize that we have been in the presence of GOD throughout our wrongful doing, we are afraid and seek to run and hide. But our verse in Jeremiah reminds us that there is no place where He is not there. You were known before you knew it!
This entire scenario brings me to my own knees, Sweet Friend. For all the times in my life that I thought only I knew of what I was involved it, participating in, condoning, agreeing to … my Creator was watching. He did not interfere because He gave me free will to choose — we all have that gift. What He wanted me to choose was Him.
Girlfriend if you are in a predicament that has you trembling with godly fear, that is the Holy Spirit whispering to your soul to come out from hiding and come clean with your GOD. I don’t know what you have done and I certainly will not diminish the angst and fear that you are experiencing. But there is nothing too big for GOD to turnaround. In fact, He will move mountains to get you to see Him standing there in front of you with arms stretched out to receive you and love in His eyes.
On the other hand, if we admit our sins — make a clean breast of them — he won’t let us down; he’ll be true to himself. He’ll forgive our sins and purge us of all wrongdoing. 1 John 1:9 MSG
Take it from one who has lived long enough and made some poor choices in my lifetime — it is less taxing to come to GOD with my sins sooner than later. Prolonging the wounds of sin only cause the infection to fester and to lead to more deeper spiritual (not to mention emotional, psychological and physical) injury. It’s just not worth it, Friend. All the time spent in concealing and lying and denying is a waste and takes from your life — flat out steals your joy.
And who has time for that? Life is for the living, and it is best experienced in the light of day.
Let me offer you some hope, Sweet Friend — if you are a Christ Follower who is feeling ‘trapped and strapped,’ please reach out to someone you trust (another Believer) and with whom you can confide so that you can stop the madness and get right with GOD. For whatever specific needs regarding your current situation, please seek professional help — it’s available, but you have to ask.
When you seek me in prayer and worship, you will find me available to you. If you seek me with all your heart and soul. Jeremiah 29:13 NET
Keep on asking and it will be given you; keep on seeking and you will find; keep on knocking [reverently] and [the door] will be opened to you. Matthew 7:7 AMPC
When you allow GOD to have your hot mess, He will make a way for you. It may not be the easy or short route — but you’ve got to trust Him for the best route for you.
And we know [with great confidence] that God [who is deeply concerned about us] causes all things to work together [as a plan] for good for those who love God, to those who are called to His plan and purpose. Romans 8:28 AMP
You are part of His plan and you have purpose. Begin today, sowing seeds of faith and walk confidently with the One Who believed that you were worth dying for. You won’t regret the change — you will only wish you had decided to do it sooner.
Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come! 2 Corinthians 5:17 AMPC
Create in me a clean heart, O God; restore within me a sense of being brand new. Give back to me the deep delight of being saved by You; let Your willing Spirit sustain me. Psalm 51: 10, 12 The Voice
If this sounds all foreign and new to you, let me also tell you that you can still begin fresh — but first you have to settle the matter of your relationship with the One Who can save you from it all — if you will ask. Once you’ve settled your personal relationship with Christ, you can be confidently assured that you will not face another dilemma alone again. I didn’t say you won’t have any; I am saying you will have the ability to call on power from GOD to deliver you from bad decisions and potential fig leaf moments.
While you walk this earth, there is still time to begin again. Our GOD is a loving, forgiving and faithful GOD — He created you with love in mind. Your faith in Him is the elemental substance that is evident He resides within you, and you can grow that faith.
Fellowship with The Holy Spirit and other Believers will cause your faith to enlarge and you will soon find that as you invest yourself into the life He has given you, you will be sowing seeds of faith for you to become firmly rooted and planted in your faith. Some of those seeds will sprout for others who will need your love and tenderness in their times of despair — because you were meant to comfort the ones coming up behind you.
Rise up, Sweet Sister — drop the fig leaves. It’s time to move forward with a garment of hope and joy!
I love you to Heaven and Back, Girlfriend ~~
LindaRJohnson, TitusTwo Visionary