Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 16

But to Jonah this seemed very wrong, and he became angry. Jonah 4:1 It’s all too easy to judge Jonah. Easy also to declare that, because all anger is at its heart a desire to be in the place of God, it should simply respond to a biblical rebuke and go away. Seeing anger thisContinue reading “Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 16”

Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 15

When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he relented and did not bring on them the destruction he had threatened. Jonah 3:10 This should really be where the book of Jonah finishes. And in many children’s bible versions, it does finish here. The narrative arc of the disobedientContinue reading “Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 15”

Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 12

The Ninevites believed God. A fast was proclaimed, and all of them, from the greatest to the least, put on sackcloth. Jonah 3:5 Advent may not seem to be a time for sackcloth. For those who know the church calendar, it might seem more logical to think about repentance in Lent. But historically Advent andContinue reading “Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 12”

Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 11

Then the word of the Lord came to Jonah a second time: “Go to the great city of Nineveh and proclaim to it the message I give you.” Jonah obeyed the word of the Lord and went to Nineveh. Now Nineveh was a very large city; it took three days to go through it. Jonah began by going a day’s journey intoContinue reading “Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 11”

Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 10

“What I have vowed I will make good.     I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the Lord.’” And the Lord commanded the fish, and it vomited Jonah onto dry land. Jonah 2:9b-10 And here we arrive at the point that the children’s bibles are always leading: Jonah leaving the fish for dry land and “making good” what he has “vowed”. YetContinue reading “Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 10”

Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 9

“When my life was ebbing away, I remembered you, Lord,and my prayer rose to you, to your holy temple. Jonah 2:7 It’s extraordinary how long we can try to live disconnected from the source of life. One of the things I value about Jesuit spirituality is the way it leads us to identify the sourcesContinue reading “Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 9”

Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 8

From inside the fish Jonah prayed to the Lord his God. He said: “In my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me.From deep in the realm of the dead I called for help, and you listened to my cry. You hurled me into the depths, into the very heart of the seas,Continue reading “Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 8”

Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 7

Now the Lord provided a huge fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights. From inside the fish Jonah prayed to the Lord his God. Jonah 1:17-2:1 There’s a line from Shakespeare’s Macbeth that has particularly held on to me since I first read itContinue reading “Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 7”

Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 6

God of sea and dry land,God of Nineveh, Bethlehemand the belly of the whale,God of heights, God of depths,God of my darkest abyss:I have mademyself my god.I mustbecomeNothing.YoumustbecomeAll.I have blocked the channels whereYou reach me in my darkest hour.I have clenched my fist to fightin place of Your hand charged with life.I must go I-don’t-know-wheretoContinue reading “Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 6”

Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 5

The sea was getting rougher and rougher. So they asked him, “What should we do to you to make the sea calm down for us?” “Pick me up and throw me into the sea,” he replied, “and it will become calm. I know that it is my fault that this great storm has come uponContinue reading “Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 5”