Often, when we hear the word 'no' we think of the limitations being placed on us.
I'm sure that's what my toddlers think when i say 'no' or 'NO!' ...depending on the situation... Their faces get all scrunched up, their bottom lips stick out and they start to whine and cry. But if they only saw things from my perspective they would see the reason for the 'no'.
'no' you may not have a toy every time we go to the store. (i want you to be grateful for the things that you have...plus...you'll be so much more excited for that toy when you get it on your birthday.)
'no' you may not put your toys on the end table. (my hot coffee is here and will get pushed off and you will get burned.)
'no' you may not play on the stairs in mommy's shoes. (while it looks like a lot of fun, and you might not fall. you could fall and get hurt really badly.)
'no' you may not touch the stove. (it is hot and will burn you and then you may have burn damage on your hand that not only will you always regret but also that could keep you from being the concert pianist that God has possibly called you to be.)
and for those of you with teenagers:
'no' you may not have a tattoo. (you can't be the international spy that God has possibly called you to be if you have a tattoo and you'd better not let a 15 year old you decide what you can and can not do when you are 30.)
'no' you may not go to that party. (i know that you say you won't do anything...and you might be strong enough to avoid the temptation...but there will be pictures of that party up on facebook tomorrow morning and those pictures will be up five years from now and your potential future employer will be looking at them as will potential future spouses and you don't want them seeing you at that kind of party.)
So... When God says 'no'...and we start to crinkle our faces, we need to remember that He is not fencing us in with barbed wire so we can only stay in His little box for us. Rather, He sees the whole picture and setting us free from our own poor choices.
Wouldn't it have been nice if Adam and Eve had just listened to the 'no'?