Devotional: May 14, 2021
15Then God said to Noah, 16‘Go out of the ark, you and your wife, and your sons and your sons’ wives with you. 17Bring out with you every living thing that is with you of all flesh—birds and animals and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth—so that they may abound on the earth, and be fruitful and multiply on the earth.’ 18So Noah went out with his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives. 19And every animal, every creeping thing, and every bird, everything that moves on the earth, went out of the ark by families.
20 Then Noah built an altar to the Lord, and took of every clean animal and of every clean bird, and offered burnt-offerings on the altar.
Genesis 8: 15-20 NRSV
The journey to hell and back which Noah endured with his family is finally coming to an end. It had rained for 40 days, but it probably took months for the water to cover the earth, and then evaporate. I cannot even imagine what that experience must have been like. After the waters subside, God issues a command to Noah: “Go out of the ark, you and your family, and take all of the animals with you!”
Noah, a Godly man, does exactly as he has been commanded. He disembarks from the great big ark. What next? What would you do, as your very first act, upon setting foot on dry ground for the first time in months? Would you kiss the ground? Would you explore the land? Would you just lay down on the ground, thankful to be completely still and sationary?
After setting foot on dry ground, Noah’s first act was giving thanks to the Lord. He and his family had endured a trying time together. Before doing anything else, Noah chooses to build an altar to the Lord. Why does he do so? He is aware of how God had sustained him and his family throughout the months of drifting in the water. Now, they choose to worship the Lord, giving thanks and praise to Him for their deliverance from the storm and flood.
On Thursday, May 13th, The Centers for Disease Control in this country (the CDC), offered up new guidance for the Covid-19 pandemic, saying that fully vaccinated individuals no longer need to wear a mask except for specific situations. This new guidance applies even to most indoor events.
Noah and his family survived an incredible event. We are still surviving an incredible event. The two are not the same, but there are some commonalities between the two events. Our world was rocked, like being rocked in a boat for months. The ground was not stable, and we did not know which way things were going to go. Many lost their lives, and grief abounded. Yes, God had a hand in the great flood, but he acted to preserve life. I do not believe that Covid was a punishment from God. The Lord promised after the flood that He would never allow such destruction to occur again.
We realize that our world is not out of the woods by any means. We still need to be wise. Yet, this is an opportunity to give praise to the Lord. He has seen us through an incredible event, as He did Noah.
The first thing Noah did was to worship the Lord. He gave honor to the Almighty. When something wonderful happens in your life, do you slow down and give the Lord your praise? The Lord loves to hear our praises, not just for the big things, but also for the small ones.
For many, this year has been full of anything but a sense of praise. Loved ones have been lost, businesses destroyed, and families have gone through horrific experiences: the list goes on. Jesus Himself was crucified and went to hell and back for all of us. What did Jesus do after His resurrection? He gave praise to His Father Almighty.
Will you, like Noah, offer praise and thanksgiving to the Lord for continuing to sustain you through your storms? The Lord promises to be with each one of us. He will hold you, comfort you, and rejoice with you. Praise the Lord!
Lord, as the sun rises daily, I know that You are also with me each and every day. Some days, the sun does not appear to shine as bright. Storms swirl around. Yet there is still light, and I know You are still present. Help me to remember and praise you for all that You have done. May I faithfully give praise for all You have done, and all You will do. Humbly, I pray these words in the name of Your son, and my Lord, Jesus Christ, Amen