Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Devotion on Genesis 8 - On the Mountains of Ararat

How convenient is that?

The ark rests in the mountains. In the mountains! I can just hear Noah and his family: "We've been scared silly in this rain storm! (We've never even seen a rain storm before this, by the way.) We've been sea-sick, have seen every other person and animal drown, the landscape of the earth has changed before our eyes, and where does this God-ordained, death-defying voyage end? On the top of a mountain! How are we supposed to get down? God certainly could have made this a little easier!"

Have you ever thought something like that? "God, why couldn't you have made this a littler easier?"

I know I have. So did Jesus. "Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from Me" (Matthew 26:42). In other words, "Could we could do this a little easier?"

But it doesn't seem to be God's way to make things easy for us. Noah's salvation through the Flood wasn't easy. Jesus accomplishing our salvation wasn't easy. Living up to our salvation isn't easy. Experiencing the tragedies and disappointments and everyday tasks of life isn't easy. Marriages and raising children and family relationships aren't easy.

Sometimes, we pray to God and it seems like He answers by dropping us stranded on top of a mountain.

Why?

Because, for now, God is not concerned with easy. He's concerned about growth. He's concerned about making an impression. He's concerned about letting us experience the full weight of what is happening in this fallen world so that we will learn the consequences of sin, mourn over it, and yearn for a world that is...

Easy. A world that is as it should be.

God will bless us in this life (God blessed Noah by delivering him from the Flood), but the blessing will come through difficulty, and the difficulty itself will point us to the new world we are hoping for. As Jesus said, "Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted" (Matthew 5:4).

When you feel like you're stranded on top of a mountain, use that vantage point to look forward to the world God has in store for us.

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