I’m telling you, there isn’t room for even one more. How many do you intend to bring in here? It’s bad enough that you are forcing me and the boys into this monstrosity of yours, and now you expect us to share our personal spaces? I’m telling you – enough!”
“I saved the best for last. It’s just a few more. I thought for sure you would like the cats and rabbits. They’re soft and fluffy, you know.”
“That’s what you said about the minks, and the foxes, and the koalas. I can’t take much more. I really can’t.” With that, she slammed the door in his face.
The old man walked away, keenly aware of the stress his wife was under. She hadn’t been there when the Almighty had spoken to him. Yet she endured the ridicule of their neighbors and friends. When his hands were bloodied from work, she would bandage them and rub ointment into his aching muscles. The boys and their wives had also jumped in to help, but sometimes in the quiet of the night he could hear his daughters-in-laws arguing with his sons. They, too, were tiring of the project. Still, he hoped he could persuade one of them to take the cats and rabbits.
That was two days ago. Climbing to the top deck, he looked up at the sky. It was a strange color unlike any he had ever seen before. Wispy white had blended into a greenish grey. The sun seemed hidden in the sky as the foggy darkness spread across the land. It was midafternoon and yet it looked like the end of the day when nighttime falls on the land. The old man took one last look as the earth trembled. He felt the voice more than he heard it. It was a voice he knew well. “Stand back Noah, and get inside. I’m about to shut the door.”
The sky went black as midnight. Rain fell, and the earth opened up, revealing depths of water they never know existed. At first the boat gently stirred, but soon it began the most violent rocking, creaking, and groaning. Some animals didn’t notice anything was amiss, but a few of the more skittish ones burrowed down deep into the hay that Noah’s sons had laid out for them. The sound of baaing and mooing, along with the weeping of the woman, reached everyone’s ears. No one had ever seen a day like this before. It was scary and wonderful at the same time. They were safe, but their friends and extended families were dying all around them. There was no hope for anyone outside of the enormous boat God had instructed Noah to build.
One by one, the old man went, offering comfort to the fearful. From the birds to the lambs, the elephants to the tigers, he went murmuring the same message. “Don’t be afraid, little one. God has seen fit to rescue us from the storm, you will be ok. I know it feels scary, but really it isn’t. God has made us a promise, and all will be well. God shut the door, he sealed us with his covenant promises, and he will keep us safe during the storm.”
Finally, he came to his own little room where his wife sat wide eyed and alone. Throwing his arms around her, he held her until her shaking and crying ceased. “Did you see them outside she asked? I saw my sister Lea, my cousin Simon and his wife, babies and old people floating in the water. I saw them, and there was nothing I could do.” She shuddered again and Noah held her tight.
After a while he said, “I know, I saw them too, friends, neighbors and relatives. I tried you, know. I tried to warn them all, but they wouldn’t listen. Just yesterday I walked through the market begging people to listen to me. I cried as I spoke to my brother, but he wouldn’t listen. He called me a foolish old man and told me to go back home to my building project. Several laughed and threw pebbles at me as I walked away, threatening to stone me if I didn’t leave them alone.”
By faith, Noah built a ship in the middle of dry land. He was warned about something he couldn’t see, and acted on what he was told. The result? His family was saved. His act of faith drew a sharp line between the evil of the unbelieving world and the rightness of the believing world. As a result, Noah became intimate with God. Message Version
Jesus said in Matthew 24:37 that the last days would be as in the days of Noah. We know from scripture that the earth was full of wickedness and that God started over with Noah. Surely, if God spared Noah and his family from the coming flood, by giving them a place of safety, he will do the same for us. During great evil, God always has a place prepared for us. There is a home, a family, a hiding place where we can be safe in the storm. He will draw us in and gather us to himself. He will comfort us when we are afraid and provide for us when all is lost.
We are entering a new era. It is a season of anxiety as many fear the future. There are wars and unrest, stock markets are unstable and the price of groceries and fuel have more than tripled in many areas. Yet we should remember who we are. We are the Noahs of this generation. We have heard God’s voice, and we have heard the warning. While it is a scary time for many, we have an ark to run into. Jesus is our boat during the storm. He is our provision. He is our safe place. No matter how high the flood comes, no matter how hard the wind blows, we have a safe place.
Listen closely as Jesus whispers the same message that he spoke through Noah so many years ago. “Don’t be afraid, little one. God has seen fit to rescue us from the storm, you will be ok. I know it feels scary, but really it isn’t. God has made us a promise, and all will be well. God shut the door, he sealed us with his covenant promises, and he will keep us safe in the midst of the storm.”
But with you will I establish my covenant; and you shalt come into the ark, you, and your sons, and your wife, and your sons’ wives with you.
And of every living thing of all flesh, two of every sort shall you bring into the ark, to keep them alive with you; they shall be male and female.
Of fowls after their kind, and of cattle after their kind, of every creeping thing of the earth after his kind, two of every sort shall come unto you, to keep them alive.
And take with you of all food that is eaten, and you shall gather it to you; and it shall be for your food, and for them. Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he.