As the number of people on earth grew, each made their choice about whether to trust LOVE. Most chose not to. And the less they trusted LOVE, the more distant they felt. They began to resent others who were intimate with LOVE. Trouble in relationships with LOVE quickly spilled over in to trouble in relationships with other humans. Heaven and earth began to look and feel very different. But there was hope: LOVE was still listening out, ready to respond to those who acknowledged their need for him and called out for help.
We have all hurt other people and been hurt by other people. It’s easy to shift blame on to everyone else and deny our part in the vicious cycle of hurt in this world. It is a true saying that that hurt people, hurt people; but free people, free people. As we pray today it may comfort us that Abel’s suffering was not unseen by LOVE. Indeed, Abel’s blood cried out to LOVE from the ground on which it had been spilt.
If you’ve been hurt, as you pray today know that LOVE sees and hears you and will defend you. If you’ve hurt others, as you pray today know that LOVE can forgive you and still has a plan for your life. LOVE went to Cain to confront him with his sin, but also went on to protect him and provide for him. Cain faced the same choice as we all do: whether or not to call on LOVE. As we pray today, let’s cry out to LOVE.
“At that time men began to call on the name of the Lord.” (Genesis 4:26). One such guy was “Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked with God.” (Genesis 6:9)
Things got bad. Everyone but one man stopped trusting LOVE altogether. How could LOVE preserve everyone’s freedom whilst also intervening to stop an ever-escalating spiral of violence? LOVE decided that justice demanded a fresh start – a flood to cleanse the earth. LOVE warned over and over, but in the end only one family believed the truth. Noah’s family were saved because they simply trusted LOVE. LOVE directed Noah to build a ship of mercy that floated above the flood of judgment. Years later, LOVE would provide another single man – Jesus – who would do everything right by God, giving his own life in order to provide a way for us to avoid being swept away in the tsunami of God’s cleansing wrath against evil.
Noah wasn’t just handy at woodwork and boat-building. He had learned to hear the voice of LOVE in prayer. Noah not only shared LOVE’s concern about the state of the world. He offered LOVE his own life in answer to his prayers and was prepared to obey everything LOVE said, down to the smallest detail. Noah must have looked incredibly stupid to everyone else around him as he obeyed LOVE. We need to be prepared to offer LOVE our own lives in order that he might answer what we pray.
Noah suffered years of difficulty, cost and ridicule. And he saw terrifying things. But he trusted LOVE and persevered in what he’d been told to do. In the end, he was a very blessed man indeed. Let’s pray today for an end to the evil of our times, trusting in God’s salvation plan for our lives. To pray is to clamber aboard the ark of salvation, built by Christ. As we pray, we trust Jesus with our lives and offer them back to him as a living sacrifice, ready to obey LOVE’s command in order to see the answer to our prayers for the renewal of the whole earth.
“Noah did everything just as God commanded him…then God blessed Noah…” (Genesis 6:22; 7:16; 9:1)”