10 lessons from Noah’s Ark

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A number of years ago, I came across an interesting article in one of the many Newspapers in Nigeria written by a certain Adeboye Joseph. Though very brief, it made such an impression on me that the more I thought about it, the broader it grew in my heart. I found there is so much to learn from this biblical account in Genesis 6-8 about the advent of Noah and his ark.

Lesson 1: Don’t miss the boat

Each time in life, there are boats of opportunity to fulfilment, greatness, wealth and even survival. One of such in Noah’s time was the Ark. More often than not, most people, out of sheer lethargy and apathy will miss these boats. In more contemporary times, there are the boats of education, which can launch one to lands of great opportunity, but which many choose to miss.

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There are also the boats of diligence and hard work, which are really opportunities to move to higher grounds. There are equally the opportunity boats of several investment vehicles, which many will miss either due to improper preparation, ignorance or complacency, and thus refuse to be saved from the clutches of want and lack. Don’t be one of them; take advantage of the boat’s presence to launch yourself to greater possibilities in life.

Lesson 2: Remember that we are all in the same boat

Yes, for those of us who choose to get into the boat, we end up in the same boat. So the issues of relative efficiency and healthy competition crop up here.

It is not nearly enough to get a choice employment, for instance. You need to realise that several of you eventually got into the company and are constantly being measured against one another; you need to realise that the requirements to get the job are not the same requirements to effectively retain and progress on the job. So the issue of going the extra mile comes in here. You must be prepared to provide that very extra into all your undertakings that will stand you out and ahead of the crowd.

Lesson 3: Plan ahead; it wasn’t raining when Noah built the Ark

It is a popular saying that every minute spent in preparation saves ten in execution. Imagine the catastrophe that would have resulted if Noah had waited till the very last moment to start building the ark. You probably would not be reading this today, neither would I have written it in the first place! We need to devote ample preparation time into every deed we need to perform.

My father used to get me prepared completely on the preceding night for any task I had to carry out on any particular day. For instance, the writing materials, documents, clothes and shoes to wear, bus fare etc had to be prepared and get well laid out on the preceding day to every examination. This practice has become part of me. Ample preparation will save you a whole lot of embarrassment, frustration and failure and make you feel good and confident when the time comes for the deed to be done.

Lesson 4: Stay fit; when you’re ‘600’ years old (like Noah was) someone may ask you to do something really big!

It is important that you are fit at all times both in body and in mind. You will need the good health edge at every point in your life and may have to carry out a tasking assignment at a particularly unexpected point in time. Noah built the ark at age 600. How would he have managed to carry out the task without much external help if he had had to do it with an abused, burnt out body or with a sick mind? I doubt if God would have found him fit for the ‘call’! A lot of people make their breakthrough moves in the latter years of their lives.

Lesson 5: Don’t listen to critics; just get on with the job!

There will always be critics to every idea you float. What you need to ask yourself is, ‘Is this idea right and will it benefit myself, my dependants, and the larger society?’ If you can honestly answer in the affirmative, please go ahead and pursue it. Remember that those critics were probably not there when you conceived it and may not know the nitty-gritty of the idea and where you are headed with it. Again, if Noah had listened to those who reviled him and thought him mad, and had not gone ahead to build the ark, we would probably all not be here today.

Lesson 6: Build your future on high grounds

The future of the ark was on high grounds where it rested after the storm and flood had subsided. Like the eagle, we need to build our life’s nests on high grounds. We need to embrace sound principles of successful living that would ensure that we leave the murky grounds of everyday drudgery to the sure shores of principled, successful and fulfilled living. Such principles include hard work, integrity, kindness, frugality, value-creation, and patience – among others.

Lesson 7: For the sake of safety, travel in pairs

God, in His infinite wisdom, directed that Noah should travel with a pair of all animals. Even the snail, which is a hermaphrodite, was made to travel in a pair. This has far-reaching implications – two is better and much more useful than one. One is not a fashionable number; it has never been. The Good Book says it is not good to be alone. There is indeed strength in numbers. Seek out those with whom you are compatible and form a sort of union or mastermind with them – the product of the synergy will surprise even you.

Lesson 8: Speed isn’t always an advantage. The snails were on board with the cheetahs.

Yes, it is indeed good to do things fast and some of us have a nature that wants things to happen right now. But then the art of arriving at your destiny is far more important than how fast you arrive at any destination. It is not inconceivable to find people who are admittedly travelling fast in life – but in the wrong direction. Unfortunately, most do not realise this until they arrive at the wrong destination. You need to be concerned about knowing which wall your ladder is leaning against and not just about how fast you are climbing.

Lesson 9: When you’re stressed, float a while

Take a break when you need one. Prevent burnout; you are not indispensable after all. If you should break down, that company will continue without you. We do need to work hard and diligently, but we must realise when we need a rest, when we need to ‘float’ away from all the tension and ‘madness’; it is then time to soak in the rest so much available in God’s system.

Lesson 10: Remember the ark was built by amateurs, but the titanic was built by professionals.

No matter the storm, when you are with God, there’s always a rainbow waiting!

He is the One that turns our folly into wisdom. The race indeed does not belong to the swift, nor the battle to the strong. It is all God’s grace. Continually ask for this and it is always His pleasure to give it in abundance. With Him, you are definitely going to win. This is not to say there will be no trials or tests of life but you will be granted the grace to overcome them and even when the trials appear too daunting, the very grace to cope and overcome will present itself right from inside the trials! That is His very nature.

Until our next meeting, please stay INSPIRED in His presence!