5- Don’t listen to the critics; just get on with the job that needs to be done.
So here’s Noah building an enormous boat in the middle of the desert. Let’s say it hasn’t rained in months. Noah’s neighbors are beside themselves. The gossip mill is heating up fast. I mean, there’s obviously a crackpot, old fool in their midst. They’re probably hiding their wives and kids from the neighborhood lunatic. They’re jeering at Noah, laughing even. It’s easy to get caught up in the skepticism of others. Personally, most days it just takes one person asking me “are you sure?” to throw me completely off track. My paranoid voice kicks in — you know the one: “oh maybe I made a mistake” “I guess that wasn’t what happened” — and at the end of the inner monologue, all I’ve done is defeat myself. It takes a strong will, not to mention tough skin, to not give in to criticism. Poor Noah, you may say. Poor Noah, those people were so mean to him. Well Noah had the last laugh, didn’t he? If Noah had cared just a LITTLE bit about what people were saying and thinking, I would not be sitting here writing this, wouldn’t I? Sometimes the things God directs us to do doesn’t make sense. It seems silly, or too small to make a difference, or too large to be accomplished. Critics will come against us but what they don’t understand is that God rewards His faithful workers. Don’t listen to anyone but God.
4- Stay fit. When you’re 600 years old, someone may ask you to do something really big.
I can’t say I love to exercise. That would be lying! I mean, I feel really good while I’m doing it. I feel strong and accomplished. The hard part is waking up at the crack of dawn, rolling out of bed and leaving the cozy, warm niche between my darling husband and dog just to get on a train to go to the gym. But there are other ways to be fit as well! Besides keeping your body fit (you’ll need all that sinewy muscle to haul all that wood around), you need to keep your MIND fit. Noah was 600 years old and there is no indication that he suffered from any of the ailments that plague our senior community today. Oh sure, all his neighbors thought he had lost his mind, but can you imagine what God’s command would have done to a feeble minded man. If grown men in the prime of their lives have been known to quail before our Lord, how much so would a man in a delicate stage of life? My pastor says the best way to keep your mind fit is to constantly learn and grow, and you do that by reading…a LOT. I’ve had up to four books in my purse at a time. I always have a Bible, at least one other spiritual growth book, and a for pleasure book. It’s all about being prepared!
3- Plan ahead. It wasn’t raining when Noah built the ark.
Noah lived in the middle of the desert. It NEVER rained there. But when God told him to build an ark because there would a great big flood, Noah didn’t question God but instead got right to work. The first thing he needed to do was find a bunch of trees to chop down for the wood. Sure no problem…lots of trees available in the middle of the desert. So where did he find all the wood? I imagine he would’ve had to place an order for some from some distant land where trees were plentiful. Such massive shipments of wood that would’ve been needed to build the immense ark could’ve taken months or years to arrive! So plan ahead. You never know when God’s going to call you.