Genesis 2:10-17

This summer my husband Michael and I took a road trip to the Grand Canyon and back. All in ten days! We made the most of it, stopping at some incredible places.

One such place was Horseshoe Bend, located less than a mile off the road. Seeing it requires a short walk through soft sand and desert winds that lead up a steep hill. The land plateaus a bit as the sand gives way to rocks and scrubby green bushes. Then you come upon the mighty blue-green Colorado River slithering around a hairpin turn. This cavernous boundary, shifted and shaped over thousands of years, is nothing short of magnificent. It is a gift in itself, and discovering it is one as well.

The boundaries that God places in Eden are meant to be gifts. Just as those mighty rivers shape the landscape, the boundary that God places around the tree from which they could not eat shapes the divine-human relationship. Being God’s people means acknowledging that humans are not God. We need guidance and perspective that we cannot create for ourselves. 

Boundaries keep us healthy and help us avoid the temptations of overextending ourselves. They keep us humble while providing a structure that frees us to pursue our own creative work. God’s boundaries are not created to trap or confuse us; they are meant to inspire, guide, and give us purpose. The life God wants us to experience is a gift we do not want to miss. 


What boundaries do you need to embrace as gifts from God? 


God of rivers and guidelines, shape me into the person you want me to be. Erode from my life whatever holds me back from your intentions. Amen.

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