A friend asked me to create a cake for her son's first birthday party with the theme of Noah's Ark. As I was looking at all the ideas for cake designs on the internet, getting way to excited by all the possibilities and heading toward something complicated, I noticed that most of these cakes were done for baby showers. This brought to mind a question; why do we as an American society love to adorn our new delicate child's room with reminders of the most violent month in our world's history? A time when God had so much anger at his own precious creation that he made a very hard choice to drown us out along with every other living creature. My Bible has 1,042 pages of scripture and on page 5 I find this story. I don't know exactly how much time had passed from when Eve took that first bite (end of page 2) to when that first raindrop fell on day 1 of 40, but common sense would tell me that our ancestors quickly lost control in sin. To our children we teach this story at a very young age sharing with them God's promise in the rainbow to never flood the earth again. But I think there is something more going on in this story.
Let's look at Noah, a man of faith. Genesis 6:9b describes Noah as "a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God." The next sentence tells us that Noah had three sons and lists their names. One man chosen to survive along with his family and this is all we know about him. It doesn't seem like enough of a description, or is it? There are two powerful words in that first sentence to describe any sinner: righteous and blameless. The next sentence sums it up, "Noah walked with God." What do people say about you?
I don't know if the world we live in today is as infested with sin as it was at the time of the flood but I do know that each of us has a choice to walk with God or not. Noah was probably an outcast in society. Someone to poke fun at (especially once he started building that ark in the dessert over a span of 100 years!), someone without friends but plenty of enemies, someone who was lonely, desperately wanting to fit in somewhere, someone with a heart who wanted God more than anything the world had to offer. Noah was willing to put everything on the line to follow the Lord God. Noah was the only man of his time who would. He was a man of unwavering faith; a true servant of the Lord. Noah's faith saved him and his family from destruction. God loved Noah.
Much like Noah, our faith is what saves us today. Our faith in Jesus Christ means the difference between life and death. You either have it or you don't. There is no gray, no middle ground, you're either in the boat or out drowning in the floodwaters. As you walk through the daily grind of life as a sinner, what choices will you make? Will you choose to walk with God striving to become just like Jesus, blameless and righteous? Or will you conform to the world, drowning in sin? Jesus himself reaches a strong arm out of the boat willing us to reach out and grab on obtaining life! The choice is yours: have faith and live, or live in the world and drown.
We teach our young children the story of Noah, not because of all the fuzzy cute animals, but because we want them to grow up with faith like Noah. Faith so strong that they will do anything the Lord asks of them and walk firmly in his ways all of their life. We don't want our children to be the one's outside the boat drowning. We want them safely inside, sitting next to Jesus.
A Party For Noah!
My friend Julie had so many great ideas for her son's first birthday, that I wanted to share them with you. She kept the party simple and homemade, though you would have thought it took her hours to put together! Here are a few of her ideas to get you started on your own Noah's Ark themed party!
Julie had plenty for the kids to do while they waited impatiently for cake and presents! At the coffee table, they could create their own ark using animal stickers and a pre-cut ark.
Little book and animals stations were set-up around the designated party area. Baskets were filled with books about animals and Noah's Ark with plenty of stuffed toys to act out the story.
As kids played and became thirsty, they could visit the rainbow drink bar and pick a flavored drink.
Of course, you can't have a fun drink without a fun cup to put it in! Clear cups reveal the beautiful colors of the drink and a homemade sticker with the party theme adds a personal touch to the front. Grab your favorite Noah clipart from the web and print them onto sticker paper to create your own!
Cake time! For this party, the cake was quite simple. This ten inch round cake is surrounded with silhouettes of animals topped with a rainbow and a silhouette ark. Inside the cake is another touch of God's promise! Apply a rainbow of colors to the frosted middle layer of the cake to give each guest a taste of the rainbow.
Inside the cake is another touch of God's promise! Apply a rainbow of colors to the frosted middle layer of the cake to give each guest a taste of the rainbow.
While little hands wait for cake, keep their hands occupied and tummies full with other fun treats! Goldfish crackers floating in rectangle paper containers are a grab and go snack that is sure to keep your little animals happy!
A one year old's party isn't complete without a cake just for them! A gumpaste giraffe sits on top of a six inch round cake. Around the cake is the name of the birthday boy with animals cut-out of each letter to match the invitations. Add a rainbow, making each letter a different color.
Let the smashing begin!
Note: always remove sculpted figures from your child's cake. Many contain tooth-picks for support and small, hard to chew pieces become chocking hazards.
As a thank-you and special treat for the small guests, each child was sent how with these adorable treats! Baby jars filled with colorful M&M's were topped with a magnet animal. Around each jar is a repetition of the invitation and a picture of the birthday boy. What child wouldn't want to go home with these!
Enjoy your next Noah's Ark party and telling your children of one man's amazing faith in the Lord!