God asked Noah to build an ark. You’ve probably heard this account 50 times; Russell Crowe, kids Bible songs, History Channel documentaries, and from the pages of Genesis. But Christians often miss a powerful lesson and instead only consider rainbows and animals two by two.
The ark that Noah built by command from on high was 1.5 million cubic feet. There is no record of any other ship in the world this size for at least a thousand years later than Noah’s construction campaign. All other ships of Noah’s time were likely small river vessels made from animal skins, capable of carrying a handful of people and goods. Noah was asked to do something the world had never seen.
There was likely no major body of water near Noah. Some scholars even believe he lived in a primarily arid region. So imagine Noah, in the middle of the wilderness building a ship bigger than the world had ever imagined with no water to sail it on! Noah was asked to do something that others thought was senseless.
Scripture says that 100 years passed from the time Noah heard the command of God to build until the time he boarded the ark; that’s possibly 100 years of construction!
Noah had more fortitude, more sense of clarity, and more faithfulness than I can comprehend. He was asked to build for God. And the next year, he was asked to build for God. The year after that he was asked to build for God. And again. And again. And again.
Did Noah get tired of his divine project? Of course! Was Noah jeered for his work? I’m sure of it. Did Noah lie awake some nights or possibly for weeks on end wondering if he should quit? I’m guessing he did.
Did Noah quit? No. Noah built faithfully for God. Noah chose not to give up. Noah fought every temptation to give in and the implications are incalculable.
At the start of 2016, do you want to give up on something? Have you worked on it for years? All of last year? 5 years? 10 years? Are voices in your head or people in your life telling you to give up? Is there no evidence of the outcome you want or the finish line in sight?
All of that may be true, but if God has asked you to build… then build. Build this year. Build next year. Build the year after that. Build for a hundred years. What has God called you to build faithfully in 2016? Don’t give up. Don’t look back. Keep at it.