Working Devotion: Noah

Have you ever thought about the process of building an arc in the dessert? Last weekend I was reading through the story of Noah and thinking about working. And I thought about that process. Noah didn’t just slap together a boat big enough to hold his entire family and 2 or more of every kind of animal in a weekend. He was probably working on that boat for years. He didn’t order his supplies from the local lumber yard and ask if he could get a builders discount. He had to go find the wood, cut down the trees, rip them down into boards, etc. Get nails from a blacksmith, cook up some sort of waterproofing to paint over the whole thing. Yes God had given him this command, instructions and paved the way so it could be done on time but Noah had to do the work. And since building an arc isn’t really a money maker this was probably a second job, an evenings and weekends sort of project.

I do imagine his whole family pitching in to help him. Although this story is of Noah and his faith, his whole family was invited into the arc and I tend to believe that they were a family of faith under Noah’s leadership. So maybe, Noah’s wife went back to work to help support the family and fund this project while Noah focused on the arc. Maybe his son’s tended his flocks alongside their own while dad was framing up the animal stalls.

I also imagine that the people in Noah’s community probably weren’t that supportive. They all thought he was a crazy old man spending all his time and money on a worthless project. The arc was huge. This was not a model train collection that you could hide in your basement. This was taking over the backyard and spreading out into the dessert. This was very much a “Field of Dreams”. Noah and his family were the only ones who saw what God was really doing.

At 900 years old I assume Noah had learned a few lessons and had lots of maturity. At 42 I think feel like I have learned and grown quite a bit and love the wisdome that comes with aging, I can’t imagine all there is to learn in 900 years! Still I wonder if there were days he struggled with doubts and insecurity as he worked on the arc. No matter how old we get we still live in a fallen world and are fallen people. So I wonder if he questioned God and this crazy calling on his life. Yet, he never gave up, never stopped believing, didn’t stop working. And as a result humanity was saved.

So what can I, a working mom, learn from Noah?

Well, like Noah, I believe that I am working because God has called me to work in this season of my life. And, like Noah, I march forward in faith that God will take care of my family as I walk in obedience to Him.

And like Noah, I too have a second job, as a wife, mom and homemaker. My family helps and supports me so that I can work and care for them.

And just as I believe God provided the necessary supplies to build an arc in the dessert I believe God is equipping me as a working mom for what ever tasks lie ahead.

I think the overall message for me in this aspect of the story of Noah is the faithfulness and hard work necessary to fulfill God’s call on your life. Yes I need to believe God has called me but also I need to work. They are not really 2 separate things, they are joined together. God calls, you work. Works without faith is useless but faith without work isn’t particularly useful either. James 2:14-17 “What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him?…faith by itself if it is not accompanied by action, is dead… So I keep getting up and I keep working. And it is good.