I’ve always been fascinated with the story of Jonah.
The way the readings go the Psalm Response for today is from Psalm 51.
When I looked at the readings for tomorrow (it’s Tuesday night when I’m writing) I giggled as I scanned Jonah’s journey through the City of Nineveh calling them to conversion of heart and then there is the hearts call for Mercy.
What made me giggle is knowing what’s coming – Jonah pouts. And not coming – the total death and destruction of the City. Can you just imagine expecting to see the total destruction (video of building implosions)of a city, a huge city full of people? Can you imagine expecting this death and destruction, thinking that the people of the city would not repent? Can you imagine walking through the city calling people to conversion and thinking, they’re not listening, they’re never going to listen, their town is going to be destroyed and – I get to watch. Bwahahaha! They’ll get theirs, yes they will. Dammit!
And SURPRISE!!!! The King (governor, leader, mayor) not only listens to the message, he rends his heart, declaring a city wide time of fasting and prayer – and his garments (an outward sign of an inward change) repenting for all of the evil, seeking and receiving God’s mercy.
Can you imagine?
I know sometimes I’ve wanted a lot of people to get their comeuppance, yes I have. And I am absolutely certain that there is more than one person who would like to see the same for me. In other words we all need mercy and we need to offer mercy to one another. I am absolutely grateful that this does not happen with any regularity. But I like Jonah, he wanders off and pouts. He’s what we’d call Successful. The people of Nineveh repent, turn their hearts to God, change their ways and Jonah pouts. Jonah misses the point. Entirely.
As usual I got started thinking about quilting:
Quilting calls us to patience.
Quilting calls us to kindness.
Quilting calls us to hope
Quilting calls us to trust
Quilting calls us to faith
Quilting calls us to practice
Quilting calls us to forgiveness
Quilting calls us to a listening heart
Quilting calls us to eyes that learn to see
Quilting calls us to listening ears
Quilting calls us to commitment
I’m going to continue contemplating how to take the lessons of quilting into my faith life and the lessons of faith into my quilt life.