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May 2024

“Sitting on the Rainbow” sample

Excerpted from the book by Ruth Gilmore © 2002 – 2011 All Rights Reserved

Lent 1: “Sitting on the Rainbow”

Gen. 9:8-17

Preparation: Bring a picture of a rainbow or of Noah’s ark with the rainbow above it. You may also bring candy in rainbow colors to hand out at the end of the sermon.

Raise your hands if you’ve ever seen a rainbow. Can you tell me what a rainbow looks like? (Choose a volunteer to describe a rainbow.) Rainbows are beautiful, aren’t they? What is the shape of a rainbow? (Let a child answer.)

We usually see a rainbow as an arc in the sky. Sometimes we might even see a half-circle stretching from the land, up into the sky, then back down to the land.(Describe the shape with your gestures as you talk.) But did you know that a rainbow is actually a circle? Usually, we can’t see the whole circle from where we’re standing. Clouds or buildings may get in the way, or there may not be enough moisture in the air to catch the light, and then you can’t see the whole rainbow.

If there is enough mist in the air and the sun hits the mist just right, you might be able to see an entire rainbow circle. You can create your own rainbow if you go outside on a sunny day with a hose and spray a fine mist into the air. Then watch the mist carefully; you should be able to see a rainbow form. And if you’re sitting just right, you will see a rainbow that starts on one side of you, goes up into the air, and comes down to end on the other side of you. You will be sitting in the middle of a rainbow!

(Here you may offer your own rainbow story. My example follows.) One day I saw an entire rainbow–the whole circle! I had hiked to the bottom of a huge waterfall. I thanked God for such an awesome, beautiful place. Suddenly, something incredible happened–a brilliant rainbow started to form. On my right side, the bright colors began. The rainbow circled up into the waterfall then around back to me and ended at my left side. I could put my hand through the rainbow. I was sitting on a rainbow!

The rainbow is a beautiful reminder that God made a promise to Noah and all the creatures of the earth after the great flood. God promised that he loves all his creatures, and he would never again cover the world with water. This was a promise to Noah, but it is also a promise to us. God loves us very much, too, and he wants to be first in our lives.

We are a part of God’s rainbow promise. The rainbow promise is a circle. It begins with God, comes to us, and goes back up to God. You are sitting on the rainbow–in the middle of God’s promise.

Thank you, dear God, for sending the rainbow as a promise of love to us. Help us always to remember that each one of us is sitting on that rainbow.