First Sunday in Lent: Feb. 26                                       

Genesis 9:8-17:

            Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him, “As for me, I am establishing my covenant with you and your descendants after you, and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the domestic animals, and every animal of the earth with you, as many as came out of the ark. I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of a flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.”

             God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: I have set my bow in the clouds, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds, I will remember my covenant that is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. When the bow is in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.”  God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant that I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth.”

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            Don’t tell anyone, but I own the Muppet Movie and the sound track from the movie (on a 33 1/3 vinyl of course).  I may watch the movie or listen to the album on rare occasions, but I am not admitting to it.  There is something very catchy and inspiring about the opening song, The Rainbow Connection.  There is also something inspiring about the rainbow in this scripture.

            What is inspiring is God’s promise, symbolized by the rainbow, that his anger will never reach the point of obliterating the earth and its inhabitants.  It is further inspiring that this covenant (used seven times in the passage) is unconditional and unrelated to how well we behave.  This covenant is based on God’s love, not on our obedience.  This is especially comforting to me during Lent when, examining my heart and life, I realize how I stand in need of his unconditional love.

Lord, may your unconditional love ever encompass me draw me to you.

Rev. Del Parris, Lost Creek, WV

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