Jonah 4 and I Corinthians 13

[Jonah Awaits the Destruction of Nineveh – copyright Trenét Worlds]

What do we get from Jonah?

If I preach to the Ninevites so they turn from their sin
If I pray from the depths in the most spiritual language
If I give my body to be thrown into the depths to save drowning sailors
And have not love – I am nothing

I am nothing because I am far from God
I do not know him in his works or his spirit
I do not share his mission
I preach his word powerfully to others but I do not hear it for myself
I resist God’s arguments with me to the end
It is not clear what will become of me, but so far as the story goes,
I am nothing

I am angry where God is patient
I want destruction while God wants reconstruction
I see they need to be converted but I do not want them to be converted
I see they need to be converted but I cannot see that I need to be converted
I see and make enemies while God values and is faithful to all his creatures
I think I am special and am not content to be like other of God’s creatures
I am privileged because God keeps on talking to me
But I am nothing because I do not get what keeps God going

I care about my comfort under the gourd;
The value it has for me is measured by my loss when it withers in the sun
But still it is a puzzle to me why God should value the children
And all the cows in Nineveh:
I have no sympathy for God when he contemplates losing his creatures.

I think out of my anger and disdain and go away from God
I pray but what do my prayers mean?
I am godly, unlike the Ninevites, and all the others I look down upon,
But in my godliness, I am godless and I don’t know it
Indeed I think in my pride my way is better than God’s

I am without God because I am without love
If I have not love, I am nothing

For God is love

Haddon Willmer

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