The first thing that made Noah notice that something was out of the ordinary was that he found himself lying face down on the floor. There was an electric hum in the air and he was hot. So hot that sweat beads dripped from his face into the dust.
It began as a whisper, so gentle that he wondered if he had been mistaken but it grew in momentum so that it became a clamour so loud that his head ached with it. It repeated only one phrase:
“I am the one and only true God.”
Noah found that tears were streaming down his face, the unearthly mix of emotions that crashed over him made him nauseas. He wanted to run but he could no longer move. He knew the voice, he had just never felt it so intensely before. So clear, as if God were a man standing before him.
“Listen to me.” The voice said and the room trembled.
Noah closed his eyes, concentrating on the sensation of the voice. It was glorious.
“I have chosen you.” It came again with vibrations that made him shudder.
“Yes Lord?” he breathed.
The room became dimmer and the chaos of emotions subsided into a certainty of the one who spoke.
“I have a task I have chosen you for. Something that will change your life.”
“What Lord?” he swallowed, “What would you have me do?”
“Build me a boat. A boat so huge it can hold two of every animal. Build it quickly.”
“A boat Lord?” he was confused. Build a boat where there was no water?
“A great flood is coming. Mankind has turned its back on me and I have decided to wipe him out. Man may be destroying himself but I will save my righteous ones… You and your family.”
Noah breathed deeply, fighting the overpowering urge to run and hide even though he knew he could never hide from God.
“I’m afraid, Lord.” It was too much. He was only a man, how on earth would he achieve such an enormous thing?
“Do not be afraid. Be strong and courageous – I am always with you. I will make a way where you see none. I planned you for this very thing.”
“Oh God!” he cried, pressing his forehead into the carpet. He could not bow low enough, “Increase my faith, Lord.”
He felt the light before he saw it. A warm glow like the embers of a dying fire, spreading over him and energising him with an unearthly purpose. Pictures of ratios and dimensions flashed through his mind, the details of every animal and their requirements, calculations and measurements… they all burnt themselves into his mind until he felt he could hold no more. He stood quickly, no longer afraid.
“I am yours Lord.” He said with purpose.
“I know…” the voice whispered and drew further away, “that is why I chose you.”
Noah felt the pressure leave the room and sucked in his breath at the loss he felt. It took him a few moments to regain his composure. He stood, leaning heavily on the wall, breathing deeply, letting the moment linger.
“My love!” he shouted for his wife who was in the next room. He hadn’t meant to shout so loud and it was with panic that she swung the door open,
“Are you alright?” she asked, studying him closely.
“No…” he began, taking her hand and holding it in his own. His face was beaming, suddenly he could not contain his experience. “Oh my love, we have so much to do.”
She laughed nervously, “What has gotten into you? What are you talking about.”
“God spoke to me.” He said excitedly.
“Good.” She nodded, assuming he was speaking about the every day kind of speaking God did with them both.
“No, he really spoke. In a loud, audible voice.” He saw her hesitation. “I promise you, it was God. I’m not losing my mind.” He took a breath, silently praying that God would open her mind, “He gave me a task to do. A big one…”
“Well then – tell me.” She smiled encouragingly, “If God told you to do something we had better get started.”
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