There are rainbows everywhere! What do you think of when you see this image? What was the rainbow's intended purpose and what do I think of when I see the rainbow? Let's dive! The rainbow is inextricably linked to Noah for many people of faith. Depending on your background, Noah's name may vary slightly, but the story is the same. In Genesis 6 we read that God is "grieved" at was has become of the people He created. In Genesis 5 it states that wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. Every intent... When I imagine that, I sometimes think to myself, what would I do in that world. How would I parent? Can you imagine being surrounded by people on every side that have turned away from God? What if it was just you and your family? Was it him and his family? Genesis 6 says in verse 8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. What if it was just you? The whole world was corrupt. A lesser man may have joined the party. He may have looked around and questioned the validity of what he held to be true surrounded by a world of depravity, but instead Noah stayed the course. He never forgot his first love. His Father. I am so inspired by Noah. He did what was right even when the world around him was championing a different message. He uncompromisingly held to the truth. The result? God saw Noah. Noah had life changing and life saving faith. Building an ark in the middle of dry land kind of faith. He was different from the rest of the world and he was okay with that. God put the rainbow in the sky as a reminder and a sign of the covenant between Him and every living creature on earth. Now rainbows are everywhere! Sneakers, keychains, flags.... Certainly let them be a reminder of God's covenant, but for me it is also a reminder that God saw Noah and God sees me. When I see that rainbow it is like a warm blanket on a cold day. We may feel tiny and lost in a sea of humanity, but we are not lost to God. Our Father is watching over us. I hope the next time you see a rainbow you remember why God created it and the inspiring life of Noah, a man who's faith changed the entire world.
I have been thinking a lot about the Israelites crossing the Red Sea lately. More to the point, standing in front of the sea. A world that had abused them behind them and an unknown land before them, on the other side of a giant expanse of water. Exodus 12:37 tells us there were 600,000 men on foot in addition to women and children. God led them faithfully through the wilderness to the Red Sea. He could have taken them a different route. Exodus 13:17 tells us that God didn't want them to see war in Philistine, lest they be discouraged and return to Egypt. This resulted in an unusual and historic exit for the Israelites. What did they think when they found themselves in front of a sea hemmed in by the wilderness? My thoughts are that they likely wanted to put as much space as possible between themselves and their oppressors, but here they are cornered. Can't go forward and can't go back with their children around their legs looking for answers. To add fuel to the fire of uncertainty, they lift their eyes to see Pharaoh bearing down on them with more than 600 chariots. By their understanding this was game over. In Exodus 14:11 they asked Moses why he dragged them into the wilderness to die. Their perspective is very one dimensional. They were worried and angry. Been there? I have and will likely someday be there again. It can take the form of illness, serious marital issues, loss of a job, watching your child walk through a difficult season and recognizing you can't fix it, etc... It is the times in our lives when we are faced with a situation that in the natural we can find no solutions. Like the Israelites we can't always see God working behind the scenes. The Israelites likely didn't know that God took them the long way to protect them. They also likely didn't know God hardened Pharaoh's heart intentionally. In Exodus 14:1-4 we learn that He wanted the Egyptians to come after the Israelites. Having Pharaoh's army bearing down, likely made it easier for them to walk their frightened families through supernaturally parted waters full of many types of sharks, baracudas, and other sea creatures including whales. This also created a substantial barrier to protect the Israelites, while wiping out a large portion of their enemy as the sea closed over the Egyptians when they pursued them. Often times when I feel like I am in a situation that has no perceived "natural" solution, I remember I serve a supernatural God who parted a sea to save His people. He has plans for me and my family. When faced with trials I pray. I Stay in His word. I Seek a lot of Christ centered advisors and continue to do my best to seek solutions while watching for His leading. I remember times in my life when I saw God "part the sea" for me, even when to my eyes I was undeserving of being saved. Below is a scripture. Our family sings it most nights after our Bible reading and before prayer. It is a great source of encouragement for us. I hope it is the same for you.
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“therefore I will hope in him.”