Read Genesis 9:1-17.
The covenant God makes with Noah after the flood is the hopeful “ending” to a narrative filled with death, violence, and destruction. After the rain stops, the ark drifts at sea for what maybe felt like an eternity — bobbing up and down in waters of unknowable depths. Eventually, the waters subside, and Noah and his family emerge from the ark to see an Earth ravaged by an apocalyptic, divine-ecological event on par with what many scientists predict may be a future for our world in a climate crisis.
It’s hard to read this story and not think of all the ways in which we are also living narratives and experiences filled with death, violence, and destruction. I’m sure Noah and his family struggled to hold onto hope for deliverance — knowing they carried the future of their world in the hull of a sturdy, but also fragile, hand-made boat. Perhaps many of us are feeling the weight of worlds on our shoulders, struggling to stay afloat, as the rains come day after day, and the waters rise up like a flood.
Maybe this is the very story we need this Advent. The covenant God makes with Noah is the “future story” we dream of, in the midst of crisis, uncertainty, and grief. It is the embodied hope that no matter how big or overwhelming things seem, we can come out on the other side with potential and opportunity. Though waters rise around us, we are anchored in the promises of a God who does not let us drift alone; there has always been a rainbow prismed in the sky.
Holy God, in this season of Advent, may we cling to your promises and signs of guidance, as we make our way through this world, swimming the currents of life as followers of your cause. May we be fruitful and multiply your Love in how we live our lives every day. Amen.