Nuggets from Noah: The Perks of Living in an Ark

This reflection was written July 8, 2016 in one of my journals. Today I was reminded of it. I was encouraged all over again. I pray it encourages you:

Today I felt led to read the story of Noah (Genesis 7:9-17). While reading, I tried to rush through it assuming I knew everything there was about Noah. The Holy Spirit, said “slow down and read all of it.”  As I started to take my time to read, I recognized the time it took for Noah’s world to return to its regularly scheduled programming (i.e. no animals, no living in an ark, and etc.). It took well over a year for things to return to “normal.” It took 40 days to flood the earth and over a year to restore the land.

As I read this story, I started to see my life. I too have been in an ark, a place of protection during the flood of life.  It is as if all that was good, honest, and true were permitted to remain while every lie, deception, past mistake, and negative mindset were left out of my ark. The world as I knew it was being destroyed around me; and I was forced to be by myself as things from my past were being drowned by the torrential rains of God’s love, truth, forgiveness, and grace. It was cold and dark, but I was never alone. Being in similar situations, I assumed it would not take as long to get out the ark. However almost 7 ½ months later, I am still in the ark. Things are slowly returning to normal, and the sun is starting to shine again. It is not quite time to come out, but I have more hope that the doors will be opening soon.

I must retract my statement about Noah’s life returning to normal. Nothing was normal about Noah’s life after leaving the ark. In the beginning of the story, he had just a piece of land to call his own. Now, he had the world as his possession. He already had authority as the patriarch of his family; but he obtained dominion over the earth upon leaving the ark. His family had been entrusted with replenishing the earth for the glory of God. He went into the ark as a servant, and he left it as a Ruler. He went into the ark following commands, but he left it free to do what his heart desired.  Noah was a completely different man a year or so later after being in the ark. He had become wiser; skilled at taming animals; and a great strategist dealing with the issues that arouse on the ark. Noah’s patience was perfected while waiting to be released from the ark. He became a master at caring for creation. He developed a deeper understanding of God while enduring the flood. Building the ark proved God to be a provider. Living in the ark proved God to be a protector and sustainer of His creation.

 Today you may be in what appears to be the greatest storm of your life. Having gone through a few storms, you assumed God would have responded by now. However, you do not know what is being prepared beyond your limited view of the situation. God is developing a place where you can thrive, have dominion, and enjoy His creation. Take a lesson from Noah and wait on God. Allow God to handle what is outside of your power, and you tend to what you can fix. Allow this time to perfect your love and skills. Let the truth of God’s love for you assure you that this time will not last forever.

Noah received new instructions upon leaving the ark, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth.” (Genesis 9:2) Initially, he was restricted by what could go into the ark. Once Noah was released, he was given permission to produce as much as he could for as long as he could. Authority is given to those who submit themselves to God’s will during the time of a storm. I pray you will be found submitting yourself to God’s will while in your storm. There is something God is working inside of you and outside of the ark. Yield to the process and watch God keep his promise of protection and provision. You’ll be released from the ark at the perfect time. Thanks for reading!-Charity Israel

 

 

 

 

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The Perfect Mate List Poll

As the thirty first year of my life is quickly approaching, I have found myself doing a lot of introspection. I have been checking my closet making sure all the skeletons are out of it from the previous years. I have been forced to reevaluate some of my relationships, and I have given walking papers to those who truly needed them. I have been confronting all the clutter of my life, and I must admit it has been excruciatingly painful. However, I push through because wholeness is my desire, and I know the liberation that will be experienced after this is over will be well worth it.

One of the tools I have been using to gauge my progress in life is my old journals. I go back to them to see how much I have grown or not. I use them to encourage me through moments of testing and trials as a reminder of how  great God has been to me. Today I was reading one of my old journals, and I came across an entry from June 25, 2008. As I read it, I chuckled because in it contained my Perfect Mate List. I will admit the caliber of man I entertained drastically changed when I created it, but  it has also been what some have accused as the reason behind my singleness.( Side note: #Mr.Godiva and I are no longer together and the #dearfuturehusband post will be returning.) Yet when I read it, I honestly do not believe I am asking for too much. The list is much smaller now, but today I figured I would give each of you a sneak peak into my prayer journal and get your personal opinion:

June 25, 2008-So my ladies and I were talking, and one of them shared about how they made a list concerning what she wanted in a husband. I want to do it, but I’m scared my list might be too much. So here is the deal God, I will make my list and you revise it. You know what I need and that is more important than my wants:

  1.  A man that lives to honor You in word, deed, and heart (a Psalm 119 man).
  2. A man of integrity and vision (a big dreamer).
  3. A man who lives to learn, know, and live the word of God.
  4. A wealthy man.
  5. A man who loves me for me, no exceptions!
  6. A fashion-forward man.
  7. A man that lives and love to worship and pray. He is unashamed to show his love for God.
  8. A man who loves and appreciates his family.
  9. A shrewd business man.
  10. A good steward over his finances.
  11. A man of great faith.
  12. A humble and gentle man towards me and those who need it.
  13. A man who walks, understands, and knows his authority as a son of God.
  14. A man who keeps his word (swears to his own hurt).
  15. A man who is aesthetically pleasing in my sight.
  16. A man that has a wonderful sense of humor and loves to have fun…you will be done Amen.

I’m grateful that you have made it to the end of this list, and now I’m asking for your assistance. If you feel this list was absolutely ridiculous, let me know. If you feel I’m absolutely delusional, let me know. If you feel that this list is not detailed enough, let me know. I look forward to your feedback. Have a Marvelous Monday!!!

 

 

Photo Credit:  https://joyswordsofencouragement.wordpress.com/category/spirit/