Before God walked with Adam and Eve in the cool of the day, before God breathed that first life-giving
breath into their lungs, and even before God formed their human bodies, God ordered. He took the chaos that was the cosmos and perfectly ordered it for life to flourish. In the biblical account of Creation, God prepares and orders environments on days one through three. And then in days 4-6 respectively, He fills them with the life that could flourish therein. God didn’t make life— not even plants or animals — until it had an ordered place to be (the natural world) and and ordered way to live (human nature).
Apparently, order is our very first need. Before we need relationship, or even breath, we need an environment ordered for our good. No wonder we have such a longing for order. (I know it can’t be just me!)
God created us for order. But I guess it’s also true that God created order for us.
Sin reversed it all. Sin is dis-order. Even our thinking about order is disordered. For example, I so easily confuse order with control. I tend to fixate on external order, like matching baskets to organize the closets, a perfectly decluttered home, and home management/discipline systems that are so good no one actually has to be good (including myself). All at the expense of internal order. Peace in my soul.
Because while control is exhausting, peace is restful. Peace is the letting go of control, an illusion anyway, and the embracing self-control, a fruit of the spirit and a promise to anyone who will allow God’s grace to do it’s work in them. Control comes from pride, but peace comes from trust. For me, it always comes back to this. It goes all the way back to The Garden of Eden, in fact.
Don’t get me wrong. I believe in systems, routines, organizing hacks, and even beautiful bins to categorize all the things. A place for everything and everything in its place, I say! All those are fine and well. They are just not the ultimate good and must be kept in proper order themselves. In other words, the ordering of our souls is much more important than the ordering of our space. I think the two often go together, but one is clearly the higher good.
Order is the first need. But, we don’t have to always have ordered circumstances and spaces in order to have ordered souls. Just like at Creation, God continues to give us what we need in the form of His grace. In Christ, order is our forever reality, which is really good news for someone like me. And, with order in place, we can get on with breathing and walking with God.