January 2: Day Nine

Go to Day Eight

I’ve implied that a person’s image of God looks very much like they do. Notwithstanding epistemology and ontology about God and His existence, I find myself back with Jonah, siting outside Nineveh, angry that God has saved the city.

“This, O Yahweh, is exactly what I said when I was back in my own country,” Jonah complains after God is merciful. “That is why I fled, earlier, on the open sea,” he continues, “I knew that you were a God who is gracious, compassionate, patient, firmly loyal, and one who decides against disaster.”

I’ve pointed out elsewhere, that we pray, “Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those that trespass against us – except that one guy. He’s got it coming, Lord!”

I’ve suggested also, without much research, that the phrase is conditional; our forgiveness is at least related to how or if we forgive others. Jonah’s desire is that God do things the way he thinks they should be done. When God fails to do this, Jonah wants to die.

God asks, “What right do you have to be angry?” Douglas Stuart’s translation also offers, “Does it do any good for you to be angry?” one that I prefer. I feel that He is asking me the same question.

And it is a question. God could have told Jonah, “You have no right to be angry.”

I have one go to emotion: Anger. Anger is how I have survived the traumas of life large and small, it’s been my sword and shield; it flows through my words when I speak and out my fingertips when I type. And this question along with Hexagram 6, Conflict, makes me think He’s telling me to let go of it.

I have to ask God a question back, “Where do I go from here?”

Go to Day Ten