Lifelines: A new beginning by faith
by Bettie Marlowe Banner Staff Writer
Jan 03, 2014 | 482 views | 0 0 comments | 34 34 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Did you know ... Noah’s Ark is listed in the world’s largest archives on marine disasters? Atlantic Mutual Insurance Co. has this description: “Noah’s Ark. Built in 2448 B.C. Gopher wood pitched within and without. Length, 300 cubits; width, 50 cubits; height, 30 cubits. Three decks. Cattle Carrier. Owner: Noah and Sons. Last reported stranded Mount Ararat” (Encyclopedia of Word and Phrase Origins - Second Edition - by Robert Henrickson).

Was it a disaster? Not to Noah and his family, as well as land animals and creatures. It was their salvation. It was an opportunity to start over.

But starting over meant trusting God and years and years and years of hard work. Noah didn’t know the ark was going to keep them safe, but he knew his God who gave him the plans and who directed them to get aboard. And because he had completed every detail in the blueprint of the big project, his trust extended to its building. He didn’t know how long it would take, but he knew it would take them through whatever God poured out on the earth. You really don’t have to worry when God is giving the instructions.

As we enter the year 2014, no one knows what lies ahead. We plan for things which may never happen and try to anticipate what the next year’s needs will be. We have to admit — we just don’t know.

But, in a sense, we are starting over. God is not going to “build the ark” for us. Remember, God gave the Noah the plans, but Noah and his three sons had to search out the materials, get them to the site, measure, fasten boards together and apply the waterproofing.

I remember seeing the scene in the movie, “Genesis,” when Noah stepped into a bucket of tar ... and thought, “Yeah, that could have happened ...” and chuckled at his consternation. And then there was the argument between Noah and his wife when she tried to get rid of a spider. “No,” Noah cried. “You can’t do that — you’ll upset nature.”

They were people like you and me. I’m sure he got tired and aggravated as the building of the vessel took so long. I wonder if he lost faith at all.

We have to enter this new year in faith because at times, things are absolutely not going to go right. It will take patience and many times, we’ll have to say, “Lord, give me strength.”

Well, remember what we have just celebrated. Christ came to this earth with “joy which shall be to all people.” The joy of the Lord is our strength. Our faith is in Him. To enter the unknown without Christ in our hearts is scary. We are entering the unknown. But we walk by faith.

Read the story of when the priests reached the shores of the Jordan River under the leadership of Joshua. They couldn’t see how they were going to cross that river to go into Jericho. It wasn’t until their toes touched the waters, that the waters rolled back (Joshua 3:13-17).

Faith is manifested by the response it prompts.