Noah waited seven more days and sent the dove out from the ark again. – Genesis 8:10 (CEB)
Usually, more is something we want. We swim in a culture that can’t get enough. We are always striving and desiring more. We often ask God for more. More patience, more peace, more love, more time, more health, more money. We don’t often ask God for less. Except in times of suffering.
I can’t comprehend the gut-wrenching earnestness of Noah’s prayer of less as sat in the ark during 40 days and 40 nights of unrelenting rain. If we do some biblical math, however, we can see that Noah and family (and zoo) were in that ark for about a year. I don’t know what Noah thought he signed up for when he began building the ark, but I don’t think he bargained for a year.
It took six months for the ark to come to rest on Mount Ararat. But the earth was still covered with water. It was three more months before other mountain peaks began to show. And then 40 more days before Noah sent out the raven and an unknown number of days before he first sent out the dove.
During all of this, Noah must have been praying for less.
But God gave him seven more days.
Seven more days waiting to see if God has truly remembered him. Seven more days of waiting to see if there was anything other than water. Seven more days for some sign of hope that the life outside the ark was possible.
Sometimes we get more than what we want or what we ask for. More than what we think we can handle.
I’m not going to say that God never gives us more than we can handle. I think the brokenness of the world gives a lot of people more than they can handle. What God gives us is a promise that God will be with us in both the more and the less of life.The brokenness of the world gives a lot of people more than they can handle. What God gives us is a promise that God will be with us in both the more and the less of life. #FMF #hope #more Click To Tweet
Those seven days more that Noah had to wait for a sign of life is the span of creation. Each day we wait for hope or peace or freedom is the same period of time that God created light or separated the waters from the land or humanity.
My purpose is not to argue the reality of the flood or a literal 24-hour day of creation. Rather, it is to proclaim the truth that the God we worship is powerful. Even when we get more than what we want (and maybe more than we can handle), God is there with us. And in a moment – any moment – a miracle is possible. Redemption can happen. Hope can be realized. Less can come. More will subside.
I pray that God answers your prayers of less or more. Wherever you are in the ark of life, may you be certain that God sees you and loves you. May you trust that hope is true and abundant life is real. Amen.
It’s Five-Minute Friday which means a word for the day and five minutes to write about it. You can read more posts here. (get what I did there)