Sunday, May 23, 2010

a good swift kick and some grace

this is what i need.
from you.
or somebody.

i need a good swift kick. i've hit a wall. i'm still exercising every day, and adding good choices to my meals - but i haven't lost anything for a few weeks. i feel stronger, and i even think i look better. but that stubborn scale just won't go any lower.

i know it's not about the scale, in my rational mind ...

but in my tired, sulky, give-uppy mind, i just want to flop down on the couch and ignore my promise to myself that i am going to stick this out. pcos is totally winning.

it's still fun to work out, once i get up and do it. but it was more fun when the scale was celebrating with me.

that's the down side.
on the bright side, i've been enjoying something kind of cool at work.

because no one's talking to me (nothing personal, they don't talk to anyone), i've got 8 hours to listen to my ipod without interruption. i've downloaded some sermons from mars hill church, and i listen to them while i work. it makes the time go by so fast, and gives me something productive to think about while i'm sizing and cinching.

last thursday, i was listening to a sermon on jonah. one of the points the speaker made was that the assyrians (the people in nineveh) received huge grace from God.

[their culture destroyed other civilizations in hundreds of different ways - because racial purity was important to the israelites, the assyrians forced intermarriage on them. the children of these marriages were outcasts: the israelites didn't embrace them into their culture because their parents chose to live with assyrians instead of being killed, and the assyrians didn't embrace them because they were inferior - they were bred as a shame to the israelites.
these children, incidentally, became known as samaritans ... anyway, back to the point]

so the speaker was saying that although we usually judge jonah for not wanting to obey God, jonah kind of had a point. when he said "i knew you'd be merciful, because you're like that, and repent of punishing them like you say you will," he's speaking in socio-cultural context. the israelites want the assyrians to be punished by God. this is only - humanly speaking - fair. the israelites are God's people - so he should punish their enemies.

but God offers a flood of grace to nineveh. and he gets jonah to be the one to cause their repentance, so He can pour grace on them.

same with us.
we're the assyrians.
we don't deserve pity, kindness, mercy.
we judge people, ignore people, ignore God, and forget kindness. we're selfish, unholy, and cruel.

still, God provides grace for us. it cost a lot. His Son had to bear the punishment in order for Him to do it. but it's there for us, because God isn't a god of karma. He doesn't make sure that bad people get bad things. He provides grace for both the evil and the good.

this kind of math doesn't make sense. He's a whole different dimension of love that i can't even understand.

and i get to learn this at work.

2 comments:

  1. dearest janelle, you are so amazing. i love the drawings :)

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  2. don't even think about the scale janelle! whenever i get upset with my scale i just look at it with an judgmental glance and remind it that with just a swift movement i can stomp it into a million pieces. i like to show him who's boss.

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