My last blog was about FOMO, Fear Of Missing Out, which dealt with questions of fear and envy in the Garden of Eden and what that foretold for many of us in this fallen world. As I was writing, I was pointed to yet another side of that same dangerous situation that also doomed us to make poor choices over and over again; that other dark side is codependency. Codependency, as I am defining it in this context, is the sense of needing to forfeit our voice and our power to individuals who should never be given a position in our lives above God's. In a nut shell, I am talking about unhealthy relationships that, once they blossomed in the Garden, wrecked our foundational trust in our Heavenly Father as our "go to."
As I mentor women online, I see codependency exhibited daily in chat rooms. Moms in "crisis pregnancies" battle with the often seemingly appealing notion of allowing anyone other than God-- their boyfriend, Mother sister, best friend etc.-- to decide whether or not they should have their baby or choose abortion. I began to see this delegation of responsibility so often that I wondered what the biblical origin of it was; and that is when I received a little revelation.
Let me explain what the beginning of this unhealthy relationship looked like through a biblical lens: In Genesis chapter 2 verses 16 and 17, God told Adam directly that of all of the abundance in the garden planted for Adam's benefit, that one tree and one tree only was off limits; Eat of that tree and death was sure to follow. Adam was in charge of the garden, tended the garden and knew what tree God was talking about. He knew what the fruit looked like and why he was supposed to not ever know what it tasted like. He apparently gave Eve the same instructions he'd received to make sure she stayed safe. Both Adam and Eve were dependent upon God and that dependence was built upon a foundation of trust. Bottom line: Listen to God, trust God, stay safe and happy.
So, when did codependency begin in the Garden? Along came the serpent in Genesis chapter 3: 1-7 which tells of how the seducer talked Eve into eating the forbidden fruit. Eve then became codependent on the serpent as she handed the power of life and death over to the deceiver. That of course was disastrous enough all by its self but then when she offered Adam a taste and he took it without question, he forfeited God's power over his life to Eve and he became codependent on Eve. That my dear reader is about as elemental a biblical description of codependency as I can give. Bottom line: Listen to someone other than God about life and death decisions, find yourself in unsafe situations and lose your happiness.