In today’s reading from Genesis 7.1-5, “The Lord said to Noah, ‘Go into the ark.” In his obedience to God, Noah saved every kind of life on the face of the earth from destruction. In the same way, Christ call us into His Church for protection. Remaining outside the Ark meant certain death but remaining outside the Church is worse than death.
The Church is called the Ark of Salvation. Just as Noah’s Ark saved humanity from the flood, Christ’s Ark, the Church, saves us from eternal death. Just as those animals that remained outside the Ark suffered and died a painful death, those outside the Church remain outside God’s protection from sin and evil. How can I make such claims? Don’t we suffer, even though we are inside the Church?
Life in the Ark could not have been easy, remaining blocked off from dry land for so long. Noah, his family, and the animals had to suffer the temporary struggle of the Ark, but in do so, they were saved. In much the same way, we have to endure the struggle of life as Christians in the Church, or face sure death outside her protection.
As we approach the half-way point of Great Lent, I invite you to consider the alternatives. Temporary struggle now in the Church for a new life later in the heaven, or sure death outside the Church? When you put it that way, the struggles of Great Lent don’t seem so bad, do they?