A friend and I were texting about our respective lives at the moment, and she asked me what story in the Bible most closely reflects my life right now.
I had to think a moment. Then I texted, “Is there a story where someone wants to run away but has to stay and be a grown up? That’s probably the story I would go with.”
She suggested the story of Jonah. I laughed later on about it, feeling grateful for my friend’s camaraderie and willingness to check in on me and take me as I am, raw and mucky and sarcastic.
I know it’s a loose reflection… my life and Jonah’s. My friend told me which stories she would pick to reflect her life right now, and I concluded she was pretty accurate on that as well.
So what about you? What Bible story reflects your life right now?
The conversation with my friend had me thinking into the next day. I was thinking how there’s nothing new under the sun, and the ragged-edged messy people we all are today is not unlike the ragged edginess and messiness from back in the day.
And “back in the day” can mean anything from yesterday to 50 years ago to when things started to go awry in the Garden. Nothing new under the sun.
We scan the Bible or read it in depth or lean on it daily or pick it up after years—doesn’t matter, really. In it we will consistently find ourselves somewhere. And we’ll find God working to reveal our edginess and messiness and help us not get stuck in it.
And even then, we rarely get the meaning revealed in a succinct bundle. It’s not like clicking through a 21-image reel on a red plastic View Master, where we arrive back at image one and say, “Ahh, now it all makes sense.” The Apollo Moon Landing. The Seattle World’s Fair. The Westward Expansion.
But even when it all doesn’t make sense to us, there is some comfort in knowing it all makes sense to God. And when all is said and done, maybe that’s all that matters. That we love Him and He loves us, and whatever edginess and messiness there is along the way will make sense on the flip side.
We won’t need the red plastic View Master. Or the 21-image reel. All the stories will just make sense. The stories in the Bible and our own stories, melded together in one epic saga.
I think Jonah and I will laugh together about that someday.
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