“You threw me into the depths, into the heart of the seas, and the current overcame me. All your breakers and your billows swept over me. But I said, ‘I have been banished from your sight, yet I will look once more toward your holy temple.’” (CSB – Read the chapter)
Have you ever been in the midst of a mess and thought or said, “Why God?” That’s not an uncommon reaction to tough situations. Now, it could be simply that we are crying out like that because we genuinely don’t understand why things are happening like they are. But, in the midst of hard times we can’t easily explain, God is a convenient target for our accusations. This natural reaction is sort of what we see on Jonah’s lips here.
This past Sunday morning we wrapped up our series, Bible Stories to Make You Squirm, by looking at another doozy. When Jesus entered the world as a baby and King Herod found out about it, he murdered all the boys two years and under in Bethlehem. What we are supposed to do with this and what it means for us is what we talk about here. Keep reading to learn more.
Also, this week I am going to make some changes to my posting schedule. Producing two posts, three days a week isn’t such a big deal for me on the writing side, but as someone who reads other blogs, I know that trying to read two posts on any given day is a lot. You’ve hung in here with me as I keep learning how to do this better over the last couple of years, and I am supremely grateful. Going forward, I am going to move to five weekly posts–one each day, Monday through Friday, all at 8:00 am. Mondays will be the previous day’s sermon or a Digging in Deeper post if I’ve had the weekend off. Tuesdays and Thursdays will be the usual Morning Musings. Wednesdays and Fridays will be Digging in Deeper posts (usually just a bit longer than the Morning Musings or else a chance to go a little deeper into a conversation we have started on Tuesday or Thursday). Saturdays and Sundays will still be off, although I may start adding some guests posts on the weekends in the not-too-distant future. Hopefully this will make for better pacing for you, the faithful reader, while keeping you still interested in making connections between the Word and the world. Thanks for sticking with me all this time. I’m looking forward to many more good conversations in the days ahead. Blessings to you!
The Hard Road
Most cultures have a set of proverbs, adages, axioms that form the popular foundation on which the bulk of its people stand when it comes to thinking about how they are going to get by and get along with one another. Many of our culture’s most popular proverbs come from the wit and wisdom of Benjamin Franklin, one of our Founding Fathers. Many of these you probably know well: Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man…healthy, wealthy, and wise. A penny saved is…a penny earned. Don’t put off for tomorrow…what you can accomplish today. Some of his proverbs are a little less familiar, but still really good: He who sows thorns should not go barefoot. The one who is content has enough; the one who complains has too much. Wealth is not his that has it, but his that enjoys it.
“Consider it a great joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you experience various trials, because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance.” (CSB – Read the chapter)
In college one time I went to hear a lecture given by an education specialist from England. I don’t remember his name or what he talked about, but I do remember one thing he said: humor often comes from the connection of two previously unrelated ideas. He told a joke about a guy accidentally eating a canary to make his point which I also don’t remember, but I do remember laughing until I cried. If what that guy said is true, then the opening of James’ letter here should be hilarious.