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Noah, his wife, and his three sons and their wives rested safely inside the ark. So did the animals. God Himself had closed and sealed the door. For seven days they waited. And then the rain began, just as God had said it would.

Rain poured from the sky. It thundered onto the ark’s roof. But Noah and his family—the people who loved God—were safe.

The rain poured down. All day. Every day. Soon water covered all the flat land, and the ark began to float.

Still the rain poured down. All day. Every day. But everyone inside the ark was safe. Noah and his family thanked God for keeping His promise.

And still the rain poured down. All day. Every day. Noah checked on the animals often. Some snored softly in their cages. They breathed slowly, in and out, in and out. Others nibbled on the food God had told Noah to put on the ark.

“How much longer is it going to rain?” one of Noah’s sons may have asked. “It feels as if it’s been raining forever.”

Noah likely smiled. “For 40 days,” he answered. “God said it would rain for 40 days. Don’t worry. Forty days is not forever.”

And still the rain poured down. All day. Every day.

Finally water covered the tops of the very tallest mountains. No land could be seen. Then God stopped the rain. It had rained for exactly 40 days.

Slowly, slowly, the water began to go down. One day the ark settled on a mountain.

Noah waited for many, many days. Then he sent out one of the ravens. The big bird soared across the water and kept flying back and forth until the waters had dried up.

Then Noah set one of the doves free. But it couldn’t find dry land, so it flew back to the ark.

Noah waited seven more days. Then he let the little dove out again and watched it fly away. Noah waited. He waited and watched. Finally the dove returned to the ark. This time it had an olive leaf in its beak. “Things are beginning to grow again!” Noah exclaimed.

Seven days later Noah set the dove free once more. This time the little bird did not return. Then Noah knew that the waters had dried up. And Noah knew that God had kept His promise. The Flood was over. And they were safe.