In some ways, TV was simpler when I was growing up. There were fewer channels, for starters. Saturday morning cartoons. No reality shows, educational shows, and more comedies.
If you lived in my area growing up, you may remember watching "Captain Noah and His Magical Ark," a syndicated children's TV show that ran from 1967 to 1994. It originally aired around the Philadelphia area on WPVI Channel 6. Captain Noah and His Magical Ark was created by W. Carter Merbreier, an ordained Lutheran minister an former Philadelphia Police Chaplain. The show originally aired as a religious program before switching to a children's program in 1970.
At it's height, the show was syndicated to 22 TV markets throughout the United States. In my area, it attracted a larger audience than Sesame Street and Captain Kangaroo combined. It ran on weekdays from 7 to 9 am and on Sunday morning.
What I remember were the local guests, songs, puppets. (His wife, Patricia, was Mr.s Noah on the show and a puppeteer.), and the organ music from local favorite Larry Ferrari. We were taught simple things from the Captain, like respect for others, listening to your parents, (things similar to Mr. Rogers) There were two other things I really liked, and they were both songs.
The one song sent like this: "Send your pictures to dear old Captain Noah. Send today. Send right away. Send your pictures to dear old Captain Noah. Send away. Send today."
Kids would send in their hand drawn pictures and the camera would pan across the pictures. Captain Noah would point some out, "Look at this picture of a cat from Suzie..." I admit, I never sent a picture in, but I thought about it.
The other song was one he closed with. It was the Rainbow Song.
Red and Yellow and Pink and Green. Purple and Orange and Blue.
I can sing a rainbow. Sing a rainbow. Sing a rainbow too.
Listen with your eyes, listen with your ears, and sing everything you see
Now I can sing a rainbow. Sing a Rainbow. Sing along with me.
That song pops back into my head when I see a rainbow after a storm. Now, the colors are not the same, but it has a deeper meaning.
Let's go way back. Way back after a really big storm. A 40 day and night storm. Back to Genesis 9, Verse 8-17, and God's Covenant with Noah.
8 Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him: 9 “I now establish my covenant with you and with your descendants after you 10 and
with every living creature that was with you—the birds, the livestock
and all the wild animals, all those that came out of the ark with
you—every living creature on earth. 11 I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be destroyed by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth.”
12 And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: 13 I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. 14 Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, 15 I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. 16 Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.”
17 So God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant I have established between me and all life on the earth.”
So, when I see a rainbow, I am reminded of the Covenant and the Promise from God. I am reminded of a simpler time when Captain Noah would sing about a rainbow, and everything felt alright.
Life is rough today and our Country needs one large rainbow from coast to coast. Something to remind us that Black lives, White lives, Yellow lives, Brown lives, Gay lives, Straight lives, young, old, homeless, rich and poor. ALL lives matter. For God created all of us. And he loves all of us.
I hope that when you see a Rainbow, you see a promise. A promise that God made with us, and a hope that we learn to love more and hate less.