One of my most treasured memories of growing up was my mother teaching my siblings and I Bible Stories. One particular afternoon we were discussing the Genesis story of Adam and Eve and how they were banished from paradise for not obeying. Me being the eldest and most outspoken asked, “Well, Mommy; why did God put the Tree there in the first place to tempt them?”
My mother stopped and thought a moment and then said, “To see if they would listen.”
“Well, if it had been me, I would have listened!” I said. The rest of my siblings all nodded in agreement.
Again she stopped and thought a moment and said, “Let’s bake a chocolate cake.”
Chocolate cake?
Suddenly all celestial thoughts of man’s downfall were forgotten as we prepared to help her bake a chocolate cake. Batter made, we all got to lick the spoon and sit impatiently while the cake baked and filled the air with the wonderful aroma of what was surely going to be the best chocolate cake ever baked into existence.
As she pulled the cake from the oven and the heat blasted us with its fragrance our mouths watered in anticipation. She placed the cake on the table and opened canisters of chocolate icing. Betty Crocker never looked so good! Instead of waiting for the cake to cool, she iced it while it was still hot. Now the kitchen was overwhelmed with the promise of chocolate. My hands trembled just watching her slather coat after coat of delicious icing on that cake.
After she finished we all just stared at the cake like it was a blessed confection from the angels themselves. Swirls and swirls of chocolate icing adorned and bejeweled this heavenly treasure. Then she told us all to sit down at the table around the cake. Needless to say we hurriedly obeyed.
“Now I am going upstairs to take a nap. No one and I mean NO ONE had better touch this cake until I get back. If anyone even touches this cake EVERYONE is in trouble. Sit here and don’t move.”
Having delivered that edict she abruptly went upstairs—leaving all of us breathlessly confused and staring at this cake in dumb anguish. We stared at each other wondering who would be the first to touch it. Then, my brother Darryl “accidentally” brushed past the cake while reaching across the table to get something and got a glob of chocolate icing on his finger. Insisting it was an accident we all promised not to tell. Well, me being the eldest I didn’t want to see him get into trouble so I had no other choice but to “fix” the cake and ensure my mother wouldn’t be able to see where he touched it.
My sister saw where I hadn’t quite completed the job and offered to “fix” my fixing it and soon all of us were hard at work “fixing” the cake. It was around this time (all of our fingers liberally smeared with chocolate) we heard Mommy coming down the stairs. In a vain attempt to conceal the evidence we all ran into the living room all the while sucking as much icing off our fingers as quickly as possible. Needless to say the cake was a complete mess and there was enough forensic evidence to convict all of us.
“Get in here!” she bellowed. We all sheepishly went back into the kitchen ready to face her wrath.
She smiled and said, “Now you know what Adam and Eve went through.”