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Noah was quite the guy. Every time I read through Genesis 6-9 I’m amazed at his obedience and encouraged by the favor that he found in the eyes of the Lord. This time through I was reminded of this little tidbit, encouraging any of us who happen to be waiting (are any of us not waiting?):
57 days of waiting.
After all that crazy rain for 40 days and 40 nights, it still took a long time for the water to subside–150 days according to chapter 7 verse 24. We know that Noah sent out the raven to see if land was dry, and eventually the raven flew away and Noah knew the waters had subsided. But then, on the first day of the first month of the year, Noah removed the cover of the ark and saw that the face of the ground was dry. DRY. Can you imagine how crazy stinkin’ excited he must have been after being in that horrid smelly boat, seasick and rocking up and down on the swells of water? He had been in that thing for months with all those animals and I can only imagine that the sight of DRY land must have been about the most exciting in the world. I would have been going crazy with excitement!
So after all that waiting, after sending out the raven and having it find dry land, after all those “signs” that things were ready, Noah opens the ark and sees that the face of the earth is finally DRY and so he…. jumps for joy and throws open the door and runs out to the dry land. Right? Nope! He doesn’t. He doesn’t do that at all. Chapter 8 verse 14 tells us that in the second month, on the 27th day of the month, God said to Noah, “Go out from the ark…”
For 57 days he waited in that ark–on bone dry land.
Now, I can see how it would have been hard waiting for the waters to subside, but it certainly would not have been tempting to jump out of the boat. When the ark rested on Mount Ararat (8:4), that would have been a bit more tempting. When they saw the tops of the mountains (8:5), that would have been a little more tempting, when the raven flew away, that would have been really tempting. But when Noah could look straight outside and see that the earth was DRY. Not that’s when I would have made a run for it. Get me out of here!
But he waited for God’s voice.
For 57 days.
For 57 days he waited inside that ark–sitting on dry land–to hear God’s voice telling him to go.
How could Noah do that? How could he have the discipline and resolve to wait?
He had learned not to trust his own eyes.
He had learned that his own perspective would not allow him to follow God’s voice. When God told him to build an ark, it sounded crazy. Everyone thought it was crazy. A flood?! It had never even rained!
But Noah looked with eyes of faith and listened to God’s voice.
So now he was simply doing what he’d already practiced for hundreds of years before (he was 601-years-old at this time!).
Perhaps if I had 600 years to practice I’d be a little better at waiting. With just 30 years of practice I’m not very good. So often, SO often, when God leads me to do something, I just jump jump jump and am ready to get going. I don’t understand when he makes me wait. Just even today I was saying to Jeff, “Why hasn’t anyone bought our house?! I thought God told us to sell it! I don’t understand!” Well, perhaps I’m supposed to sit in the ark, for 57 days, on dry land, with a bunch of stinky animals, and wait for God’s voice.
Noah did it. We can do it.
I pray that I, that we, learn to wait on God’s voice. It may LOOK like everything is ready. It may SEEM like the timing is perfect. The earth may look bone dry, but only God’s voice can tell us when the time is right.
We must wait on His voice. I pray for the grace to do that, today.
Thanks for reading.