St. Peter and the Rainbow
God said, ‘This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: 13I have set my bow in the clouds, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Genesis 9. 1 - 7
He said to them, ‘But who do you say that I am?’ 16 Simon Peter answered, ‘You are the Messiah,* the Son of the living God.’ Matthew 16. 13 - 20
In our readings for today, there are two options. One is for Morning Prayer, and it includes the story of Noah and the rainbow and God's promise never again to destroy the earth as he did with the Flood. God sets the rainbow in the sky as a symbol of that covenant. And so whenever we see a rainbow we are to remember that covenant and God's impenetrable love for us.
If there were to be a Eucharist today, the readings would include the story of St. Peter's confession that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of the living God.
As I sit here in the "wee cobwebby hours of the morning" watching the full moon set in the west, listening to the wind howl outside and thinking about these two passages, I am struck by their similarities. The rainbow is a mysterious display of colors that appears in the sky usually after a storm; Peter's confession claims the majesty of God as the Messiah, the anointed one, the liberator. (Stay with me here!) Like so much of Creation, there is a magical mystery to a rainbow and to a full moon, and Peter's confession of the majesty of God is perhaps our only explanation.
Don't miss the chance to look at a rainbow or a sunset, sunrise or a moon, full or not, or any other anomaly in Creation and say so the world can hear, "You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God. Thank you for this beauty."