According to Scripture, mankind began his journey in paradise. He gave humanity the best possible starting position possible. And as we all know, we were unable to sustain the sacred role given to us.
Although our sin interfered, God did not give up on His mission. He told Abraham that He would take him out of his land and move him to a better area. There he would be able to grow his family in peace and bless the nations. God put Abraham in Canaan. In a way, he was like a new Adam in a new garden, albeit a less perfect version.
Abraham was in the right place, but he still failed when it came to obeying without exception. The biblical narrative shows us once again the faithfulness of God when He does not let our actions get in the way of His perfect will.
He chose another man named Moses. Moses led the people of God back to Canaan, their version of paradise, and we are told it was flowing with milk and honey. They can’t even stay obedient long enough to make it to their destination, but eventually their children find themselves back in Canaan. God continues to put people in the right location, but they fail to be the right kind of people.
God’s chosen people fell into the same trap that we all do. We often think that if God would just position us with the right job, the right spouse or the right amount of money, we could do all that we are supposed to do. But the pattern of Scripture reminds us that even if we are in the right spot it doesn’t matter unless we are the right kind of people.
I know that I will never fully be the right person in the right place until Jesus returns, and the new heaven and the new earth are revealed. Some day, we will find ourselves back in the garden, walking with God and eating from the tree of life. Until then, the longing I feel inside of my heart for a better situation needs to be grounded in Scripture.
My situation will never make it easier for me to obey God. My problems are not due to my location or my vocation. My problems stem from something internal rather than external. Jesus has removed part of that barrier and will return to claim his final victory.
God is at work preparing us to be the right people and one day will put us in the right place. He has fixed our position before Him and will return to fix our location on earth.
Until then, know that what your heart is longing for is Eden. That longing will never be fulfilled by a bank account or a new location; it can only be fulfilled when we find ourselves back where we are meant to be.
Some day we will walk with God on the new earth and eat from the tree of life. Until then, God calls us to be obedient and live as though we already have one foot in the garden, making the most of his name and blessing the nations around us.