Special 1 year Anniversary guest blog post by Connie Chandler

As an English as a New Language (ENL) teacher, it seems obvious that the story of Noah’s Ark is a prime opportunity to introduce 100 new vocabulary words for animals. What went on the boat? Aardvarks, Bats, Centipedes, Zebras, and everything in the middle. With graphic clip art, photos, stuffed animals, and trips to the zoo, the learning possibilities are endless, and by the time class is over, there will be 15 more international people who can list all the species of the animal kingdom in multiple languages! Well, that plan might be a bit grander than reality, but you get the idea.

But as much fun as it could be to teach a lesson on lions, tigers, and bears, that isn’t really the point of Genesis 6, is it? I am so thankful that God chose to protect all the animals from dying in the flood… but I am even more thankful that he spared a family of humans. See, animals are beautiful and interesting and useful and inspiring, but they were not made to walk and talk with God through a garden in the cool of the day. They weren’t the ones he made in his image, for his purpose, to his glory. We are. And as often as humanity has made a mess of things throughout history, God – in his crazy love and mercy – keeps rescuing us, calling us back, and redeeming us.

In Genesis 6:18, God says he will establish his covenant, not with the animals, but with Noah. If Noah trusted God and obeyed him – if he built the ark according to God’s plans and put his family inside – then they would be saved, protected, preserved… they would live. Sound like something else you might have heard? We don’t need an ark, but we do need Jesus, and the power of his death and resurrection. We need to be covered by him and live by his grace to receive forgiveness, salvation, and true life.

God loves the animals with feathers, fins, and four feet, but he didn’t step down from his throne in heaven to put on scales or fur… he put on human flesh and died as a man to save and redeem and restore relationship with you and me.

Read more from Connie at Life is Sweet.