Jessie was reading the last of the 5th grade Bible workbook to the kids a few days ago and she said something that I have not been able to get out of my head since I heard it… What she said was; “It took noah over 127 years to build the ark”
At first I sort of shrugged it off, but later on the depth started to hit me. I mean think about it for a bit with me, 127 years is a really long time to be stuck working on a project, to be putting your family through the hard labor required to get a boat the size of a city to float. The scope of what Noah took on requires a level of faith that we don’t see much of any more. Contrast the time Noah invested into his boat with a movie just came out about a guy who spent 127 hours with his arm stuck on a mountain, hmm… I think Noah takes the prize on that one. This guy back in the day spent 127 years building a boat just because God told him to. On top of the fact that he was working his tail off to get this thing built, I would imagine that the reception he received was similar to what Harold Camper is getting this week with his failed rapture prophesy. “Are you really sure God told you to build a boat Noah?”
I write this today because I am going through the painful process of learning the art of the long build, I am learning that it takes time to do things right and that unless you embrace the process and each of its steps, no matter how many there may be, you will not finish the project as planned. I am learning to have faith, finding that God may give us the plans but not all the details and that it is him who we need to put our faith in, not ourselves. I find this project we are taking on to build an orphanage in Ethiopia, at times feels like an ark and that it feels at times like it might just be too big for us to ever finish. Today I find that its time to step back and have a little perspective and enjoy the process, each of its steps, including the ones where we take time to pause before starting to ensure that everything is in order and that we will have the faith and persistence to complete the task. Just as important as having the right tools and resources is having the stamina and health to complete it.
I think the thing that got me the most about the fact that Noah took that long to build the ark was the nagging feeling that I had about my own life. As I looked back it became clear that I do not often take the long road by choice, I always looked for the short cuts and at times missed the whole point of what I was building. Learning is more often painful than not, but who are we becoming if we are not learning?
So here is my digging your toes in the sand revelation for you today.
127 years is not to long if you are building a boat for the right reasons.