The Garden of Eden was, by no exaggeration, Heaven on earth. It was there in which perfect union between God and man existed and seen clearly in the union of Adam and Eve. But we know how the rest of the story goes: earthly paradise had a traitor in its midst.
The evil one, disguised as the serpent, convinced Eve to eat the fruit of the forbidden tree. He did this, not by forcing her and not because Eve was stupid or weak, but by bringing into question her identity as a daughter of God.
He says to her: ”You will not die. For God knows that when you eat of [the fruit] your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Eve, feeling lied to by her Heavenly Father, eats the fruit. Because of the voice of the serpent, Eve believes God does not desire her good. Eve eats the fruit because the serpent causes her to question the love God has for her. This questioning causes a rift in the union between God and man, and in turn between Eve and Adam. It is a rift we still often feel the effects of in our own relationships and in our marriages.
I spent years of high school and college being reminded at various women talks that I am a daughter of God. But perhaps it was the “fluffiness” of the whole thing that stopped me from trying to gain a deep understanding of this knowledge: "You are the daughter of the King. You are a princess!" It’s not that being a princess sounded like such a terrible thing, but it sounded too much like a fairy tale to truly believe.
But I’ve only begun to realize recently that the uncertainty that accompanied my identity made it harder for me to hear God’s voice while the serpent’s voice came more clearly. When we are not grounded in who we are, it is hard to hear anything over the lies, over our insecurities, over our wounds; if you are not a daughter, the serpent says, you are nothing more than your imperfections.
And how often, then, do these falsities creep into our relationships, particularly our relationship with our fiancé or spouse? "I am so stupid; I can’t do anything right. How can he truly love me with all of my imperfections?" Our knowledge of self, the assurance of our identity, has to be the foundation of our relationships and marriages.
When it is not, we give in more quickly to fear, to anger, to jealousy, and to distrust. We allow our peace to be taken and our relationships to grow a little more chaotic. We are easily annoyed by minor mistakes made or we compare ourselves to others. We are not open to receive love from our husbands, and giving fully of ourselves is made impossible. We eat of the fruit and the unity of our marriage suffers.
Instead, ask for the graces that are your inheritance and glory in the knowledge that you are a daughter of the King of the Universe.
The Creator who formed the Earth with His hands, who painted the stars we see at night, who breathed life into man. That you are a daughter of the One who calls the sun to rise each morning and set each evening, and the One who commands armies of Angels. That you are a daughter of a Father who created you to love and to be loved by Him, of a Father who suffers alongside his children and who triumphed over death.
About the Author: Carissa graduated from Franciscan University in 2014 with a degree in English and Communication Arts, and is currently pursuing her Masters. Carissa is the new wife of a Catholic missionary. She enjoys hiking, painting, and drinking copious amounts of herbal tea. Carissa has a devotion to Mary under the title of the Mystical Rose and longs to reflect God's beauty in everything she does.