Where Are You?

View of Mt. Shasta from Castle Craigs

Photo by Monica Beck

I am not talking about where you are geographically at this moment. Rather, where are you with your life? Interestingly, this is the very first question God asked man. “Where are you?” (Genesis 3:9). Adam had managed to get himself into a rather awkward predicament. It was not only awkward, it was tragic. The truth of the situation is that he was where he was at that moment due to some choices he had made; some very poor ones in this case.

This is a very profound and provocative question God asks. It really deserves a closer look. For one, it was an important enough question for God to ask in the first place. Perhaps we need to take some pointers here from the greatest life coach in the universe. Is it possible, God, in all of his wisdom, actually knows how best to deal with individuals from a restorative perspective? Just maybe, this question has tremendous importance from the point of our life development. God did not ask this question because he needed to know something he was in the dark about. He asked it for Adam’s sake. Adam needed to come to grips with exactly where he was and deal honestly with his situation. Finally, this question marked the starting point, at least for Adam, of a process of restoration and redemption initiated by God. For Adam it all started with a question. It starts with the same question for us, “Where are you?”

Most of us have seen and used, at one time or another, those park, mall or airport maps. You know, the ones that paint a birds eye view of the place with all the various stores, features and possible destinations identified and with one big arrow pointing to a specific location with the words, “YOU ARE HERE”.  This simple knowledge helps us gain a perspective we need to get to where we want to go. But it all starts with knowing where we are now. The same is true about our lives.

Each of us has arrived at this point in our life by a series of choices and decisions we have made. Certainly there have also been factors of which we had no direct control. However, our responses to these outside forces have contributed in their own substantial way to where we are today.  The way forward from here requires knowing three basic things; (1) where we are (which implies some understanding of how we got here), (2) where we want to go, and (3) what we need,  as in the skills, the tools, and a plan of action to get us from where we are to where we want to go. The absence or neglect of these things will most definitely insure us of a life being run, more or less, in circles.

Asking ourselves the question, “Where am I?” is not meant to drive us into some form of morbid introspection that results in a bunch of guilt and condemnation. That is counterproductive. And yet its where many of us wind up when we stop to reflect on our lives. To say the least, this is the very reason so many avoid the question altogether.  But simply avoiding the question is also counterproductive.

So, how about it? Where are you with your life? Your willingness to courageously address that question may just be the decision that changes everything from here forward.