Thinking about the rain led me to read and reflect on the great flood in Genesis 7. After all who should be able to empathize with us more than Noah and his family stuck in that big ark! And before even opening my Bible I thought about how this week is about 40 days after we started this social isolation so maybe Noah has something to teach us about being cooped up inside. (If nothing else I can be thankful that I am not shut up inside with an ark full of animals!)
There it is in Genesis 7: 12 - “
The rain fell on the earth forty days and forty nights.”
That’s the time frame that has always stuck with me – 40 days and nights. So, imagine my surprise to read all the way through the chapter to find this in verse 24:
And the waters swelled on the earth for one hundred fifty days
. Wait, what? 150 days? It rained 40 days and took another 150 days for the water to subside. Can you imagine Noah on day 41 – “Oh thank God that the rain has stopped!” And then, on day 42 – “How much longer, Lord? How much longer?”
And here we are, after weeks of the Covid-19 pandemic storm that has swept over our lives, I find myself also asking “how much longer, Lord?” It seems that the rain is slowing but the waters have yet to begin receding. We stand on the deck of the Ark, surveying the water all around us wondering what lies ahead (or underneath). We don’t know how long it will take for these waters to subside. And yet we know that when it does there will be things that have changed, hopefully for the better. And we know, like in the Hebrew scriptures, there will be another chapter and there will be a rainbow to remind us of God’s love for us and faithfulness to us. Or, as the designer of the water drop pendant notes – the cross is reflected within the drop of water “to remind us of Christ, the source of life itself.”
And for now, we are alone together.