Genesis 8:6-12 (NIV) – After forty days Noah opened a window he had made in the ark 7 and sent out a raven, and it kept flying back and forth until the water had dried up from the earth. 8 Then he sent out a dove to see if the water had receded from the surface of the ground. 9 But the dove could find nowhere to perch because there was water over all the surface of the earth; so it returned to Noah in the ark. He reached out his hand and took the dove and brought it back to himself in the ark. 10 He waited seven more days and again sent out the dove from the ark. 11 When the dove returned to him in the evening, there in its beak was a freshly plucked olive leaf! Then Noah knew that the water had receded from the earth. 12 He waited seven more days and sent the dove out again, but this time it did not return to him.
Patience is a heart virtue that symbolizes trust. Sometimes, waiting on God is one of the most excruciating times of a testing of our patience. It seems as if the whole world has forgotten about the one thing that we are waiting on. Can you imagine spending an entire year aboard a boat with your FAMILY and a whole bunch of stinky animals? What are we complaining about? Since when did we become a society of instant gratification? Who taught us that? I LOVE the part where it says Noah sent the dove out and finding nowhere to land, the dove returned and Noah brought it back to himself. When we are waiting on God, how many doves (or prayers) do we send out only to accept them back to ourselves because He has told us to wait? Some of us even the throw the poor bird out with the bath water and throw our hands up in utter defeat because we are not satisfied with “Wait, Child.” Please don’t give up 5 minutes before the miracle.
So….Here is what we do. We send out another bird, a prayer on it’s wings, and we wait. We see in the distance the bird flying on the wind toward us and immediately we are discouraged because we KNOW that it is coming back empty-handed yet again. We have already counted ourselves out of a blessing as it’s little white wings beat furiously through the clouds. We wait and watch expectantly, hoping beyond all hope for a miracle to land as it takes shape the closer it gets. FINALLY!!! We can clearly see the small branch in it’s beak as it flies faster and faster toward us. Now maybe we can get off this crazy boat and touch land. FINALLY! But what does God say? “Wait, Child. This is only a GLIMPSE of the promise.” So we send the bird and our prayer once again and now it is gone from our sight forever. Has God heard us this time? I KNOW He heard us the first time but how can we be so sure? How do we wait one more minute? Then…the long awaited answer…
Genesis 8:13-17 (NIV) – By the first day of the first month of Noah’s six hundred and first year, the water had dried up from the earth. Noah then removed the covering from the ark and saw that the surface of the ground was dry. 14 By the twenty-seventh day of the second month the earth was completely dry. 15 Then God said to Noah, 16 “Come out of the ark, you and your wife and your sons and their wives. 17 Bring out every kind of living creature that is with you—the birds, the animals, and all the creatures that move along the ground—so they can multiply on the earth and be fruitful and increase in number on it.”
Then God said….THEN GOD SAID. Wow! So often we are ready to jump ship. Surely swimming to shore would be better than just sitting here on this smelly boat! Right? Wrong! God says to WAIT! So…we watch for our bird and we thank Him and praise Him in the storm!