(It’s guest post week at SCL since Jon is in Vietnam! Here’s a new one from Callie Dean, a musician and youth minister in Shreveport, Louisiana. If you want to write a guest post for SCL, here’s how!)
Developing a Noah Complex. -By Callie Dean
Down here in Louisiana, we had a massive drought all summer long. The water level of our local lakes and rivers was at a record low, while the temperature reached highs of 100-plus degrees.
But all of this changed a few weeks ago. The clouds darkened, the wind howled, and little drops of water began falling from the sky. This lasted for at least half an hour, and our city amassed nearly an inch of rain.
That night, I arrived at church for our midweek worship service. Guess what our Scripture was?
That’s right. Genesis 7-8: The Great Flood. And even before we got to the sermon, I overheard not one, but three people mention that “we might need to build an ark!”
Now, I know that an inch of rain is hardly comparable to a deluge that wiped out the entire planet. And I also know that God promised never to flood the earth again, shout out to Rainbow Brite, so none of us should ever need to build an ark. So why do we refer to this story every time there’s the slightest hint of precipitation?
I have three theories:
1. It’s the Christian equivalent of small talk.
If you’re out at the grocery store and it begins to rain, you might start a casual conversation with something like, “Some rain we’re having, huh?” But at church, there’s pressure to insert relevant Bible verses into all your conversations. When you reference Noah’s Ark, you can still keep things light and discuss the weather, while still throwing in a Scripture zinger!
2. We secretly want to be like Noah.
And I’m not just talking about the time he planted a vineyard and got drunk. Noah is the ultimate hero of every illustrated children’s Bible; his story has action, adventure, AND animals! The real question is, who doesn’t want to be called by God to go on a worldwide cruise with a traveling zoo? That’s almost as good as hearing God call you to become a missionary on a beach resort somewhere. (Granted, Noah totally dropped the ball on the whole unicorn thing. Sure, he brought the narwhal, but would it have killed him to acquire the on land equivalent.)
3. Flood insurance, or the “I-told-you-so” factor.
Whenever we tell the story of Noah’s Ark, we like to get in a jab about all those other people who made fun of him while he was building the boat. Certainly, Noah got the last word in that story! So just in case there’s any chance God might change his mind about that whole rainbow thing, we don’t want to get lumped in with the skeptics. If we bring up the wrath of God every time we see a rain cloud, then no one will ever be able to accuse us of being unfaithful. (And maybe some kind soul will let us climb aboard their ark to wait out the storm!)
What do you think? Have you ever compared yourself to Noah? If not, what’s another Bible character you compare yourself to sometimes?
(For more great stuff from Callie, check out her blog!)