How many of you have that “ugh, just whatever” kind of person in your life? The overly-likeable, all-put together, fictitiously decorated with perfected smiles and great character- kind of person.
Yeah me, too.
Having one of my heart to hearts with a friend of mine and I had to make a confession. I’m the literally the most un-judgemental, probably been there before, it’s fine, let’s fix this kind of person.. like ever… until I cross the path of someone that isn’t as good as they let on.. then I, admittingly, am judgemental to a fault.
How in God’s name does she have that many people fooled?
How in the world is she one of the chosen ones in church on Sunday, and talking like that when the sun sets the same afternoon.
You said who was going on a mission trip? Spits coffee, for what?
Whatever, sure they are. I’ve seen who she really is…
Y’all I’m so serious, I’ve done that. Don’t ask, yes, I’m embarrassed.
I’ve just finished reading the book of Jonah and Jesus was as on-time with this Old Testament prophecy in my life as that fish was in Jonah’s.
God taught Jonah a lesson about obeying Him and Jonah learned it, was passionate about it, couldn’t wait to share it with the people.
Jonah sets out to do what God asked the first time, and He is successful. The people heard and understood; they came to God, was sorry, wanted to turn their lives around… and God said “great, okay. I changed my mind, I won’t destroy you after all.”
Jonah says wait? WHAT?
He’s mad at God. How can you do that. They don’t deserve those blessings. They don’t deserve Your mercy. What did they get ate by? Nothing. Forgive them, but for heavens sake make them sorry, make them earn it.
And here I am sitting “amen, Jonah preach. Lessons learned are lessons lived. That’s what Mama say.”
And so Jonah had another lesson to learn in chapter four.
So did I.
God told Jonah that he had put time into these people, invested in these people, loved these people and He was entitled to do whatever He pleases with them… but Jonah had done nothing and earned nothing and what he had, it was given to Him by the same grace it was given to the others he was so upset over.
As people we like to belong, we want to fit.. but we also like to decide who doesn’t fit. She deserves grace, but she doesn’t. She deserves forgiveness but not that girl.
Right then, I recognized that very same anger in myself- on a personal level, in an intimate way. When I look at my “ugh whatever” people and I see the Lord giving them favor and Blessings, I’m like Jonah.. wait, what?
You’re wasting that on someone that doesn’t deserve God, someone that doesn’t even care…
And then I remembered all the times I didn’t deserve it.. all the times I won’t..
Jonah 4:2 says I knew that you are a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, changing your mind on disaster.
Grace– a favor that is free and so good that it can not be earned
Mercy- a god that does not give us what we deserve
Slow to anger– a god that is patient with us as we stumble around who we want to be into who we are
Steadfast love- because it takes a love that constantly pours over us who consistently fall short
Changing his mind from disaster- bc he beat wreckage for us. Paid it in full, because our lives will forever be, even unknowingly, littered with sin and He loves us enough to clean up our messes, to clean up our hearts.
Jesus says Love for everybody, not just you. While this gift is only accepted by few, it was meant for many.