I was outside with my kids last Saturday. They were jumping on the trampoline.
They love that trampoline. I love that trampoline. Where else can you literally (and legally) zip your kids into a netted cage and leave them in there?
I was grilling as they were jumping. In between the flipping of the pork chops, I noticed the hose and I had an idea. I walked over to the hose without the kids noticing and began spraying the hose high in the air, watching the water fall on and around them.
They were stunned. They stopped jumping until they found the bearings. Once they understood where the water was coming from, they began jumping even higher and even more fiercely.
The moment went from perceived catastrophe into chaotic motion. They went crazy just trying to stay active in the midst of this mess.
Finally, I let up the barrage and I put the hose under the trampoline and began to spray up through the meshing. My daughter instantly stopped everything. She stopped jumping, she stopped the chaos, and she knelt onto the trampoline seeing the water become a prism of colors in the sunlight. In a whisper full of wonder told me,
“Dad! It’s making a rainbow!”
Rainbows are an absolute phenomenon, aren’t they? Double rainbows are apparently YouTube-worthy!
Each year, the Bible verses used to celebrate Lent change. This year, the first passage is found immediately after the story of Noah and the flood.
The flood story is one of the most well-known stories in the Bible. It’s been covered in every Sunday School class. It’s been questioned by every scientific reader. It’s such a grand story that Steve Carell and Russell Crowe have starred in movies about it. There’s a ton we could cover inside of this story, but let’s keep it brief.
In the story, God puts a guy named Noah on notice to create a huge boat to hold two of every animal plus his family. Then, God sends rain (something never before seen) and floods the entire earth. For 40 days and 40 nights, they live in the rain until they literally come back down to earth.
God makes things as chaotic as they have ever been.
After the chaos,
God sends something else to the earth;
That’s where this reading comes in: Genesis 9:8-17.
Perhaps the most beautiful thing about rainbows isn’t how they happen, but when they happen.
Right after the rain. Right when we need reassurance.
Now I know life isn’t all rainbows and unicorns.
But, there are times we need rainbows. There are times we need reassurance.
When there’s chaos. We need rainbows.
When there’s catastrophe. We need rainbows.
When it’s just crazy all around us. We need a rainbow.
As you live in the chaos, the catastrophic, the craziness,
/ P A U S E /
and look for the rainbow.
KEVIN STAMPER | LEAD PASTOR | @KEVINSTAMPER