The Austrian psychologist Alfred Adler was famous for beginning counseling sessions with new clients by asking, “What is your earliest memory?” No matter how his patient replied, Adler responded, “And so life is.”
Adler believed that our earliest memories leave a profound imprint on our souls. Imagine him sitting down with the first Adam and asking his trademark question. Adam’s early memories range from rib surgery to roaming the garden. Then, of course, there was the awkwardness of nakedness after succumbing to the serpent’s temptation. And, I’m sure, subsequent nightmares of being naked in public! But none of those moments represents Adam’s earliest memory:
God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it. Reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, and all the animals that scurry along the ground.”
—Genesis 1:28, NLT
Before original sin, there was original blessing. And so life is! That first blessing sets the tone, sets the table. It establishes the emotional baseline and spiritual trend line of Adam’s life. But it’s not just Adam’s earliest memory. It also reveals God’s most ancient instinct.
Blessing is God’s default setting—His first and foremost reflex. If you don’t believe that, you’ll doubt the goodness of God. And if you second-guess the goodness of God, you’ll forfeit His blessing.
Because the truth is, God wants to bless you beyond your ability to ask or imagine. What is the blessing of God? It’s God—God with us, God for us, God in us. To reduce it to anything less dishonors God and devalues the blessing. God with us is joy unspeakable and the peace that surpasses understanding (Philippians 4:7). God for us is His favor, the X factor between the best we can do and the best God can do. And God in us is power, resurrection power.
What happened in Genesis has more to do with your future than you might imagine. But like Adam, you’ve got to position yourself for that blessing. Because the blessing of God is more than a mystery to solve. It’s a decision to make, a habit to form, and a mindset to establish. My prayer is that this is the beginning of a new season of blessing in your life.