MONDAY 22 JUNE 2020
Good morning friends,
How was your weekend?
It was a real mixed bag of weather wasn’t t.? Glorious sunshine one moment, pouring rain the next. The rain late Friday evening was exceptionally heavy, I was just about to head out for a walk, but quickly changed my mind.
I found myself thinking about the OT character Noah a person well acquainted with heavy rains. His story is one that is well known, both by children, told over and over in Sunday Schools, and you will find toy arks filled with animals, and story books in many schools, toy shop as well as church halls. And of course the rainbow that comes after flood is a symbol of hope for many which you can see in the windows of almost every home in support and thanksgiving for carers in the NHS and other agencies during this pandemic. I’ve even spotted some sheep dyed in the colours of the rainbow.
We can read the account of Noah in Genesis chapters 6-9
He is a family man, married with three sons, and we read at verse 9, “Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God.”
God decided to take action, and he gave Noah instructions to build an ark, gather his family, animals, and food together, and when the task was completed to enter the ark, and then for forty days and nights God said he would send the rains, causing a huge flood to cleanse the earth.
We read that God shut Noah and his family in.....................they found themselves in lockdown.
The family then entered a time of waiting, waiting for the day they could move back out and get on with their lives. After forty days the lockdown was eased a little, but it still wasn’t time to head out, another seven days passed, and there was a little more hope, but it still wasn’t time to go out. Another seven days and it was time.
Noah and his family moved back out into the world, with new instructions from God, and a covenant made to ensure new hope.
The grace of God would be made known to those who had eyes to see, in the form of a rainbow.
I’m sure you don’t need me to point out the relevance of Noah’s experiences to our own today.
Noah’s faithfulness to God, his commitment to care for his wife and children, and for the created world shows a man of strength and courage.
However, there’s a part of his story that’s not often spoken about, but which for me points to the vulnerability and brokenness that is within each one of us.
At Chapter 10: 18-29, we find Noah in a bit of a mess, having drunk too much. And, we find the man who had taken such care of his loved ones, falling from grace....................showing that even the most faithful of fathers have their flaws. It’s all part of being human.
God knew Noah, his strengths and his weaknesses, and he used him to bring his purposes to completion. Hope for us all.
We read in the NT “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” Romans 8:28 (NIV)
Our lives are filled with days of sunshine and rain, some days we stay close to our Father God, other days we wander off, whatever happens though let’s praise God for his faithfulness.
"The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness." Lamentations 3:22-23 (ESV)