My first encounter with Mr. J was in junior high, called junior secondary school in my country. I was in JSS 2 (grade 8) and my school was test-running an after-school program at the time. Mr. J was to cover for our English teacher on the day of the said encounter.
You might have heard a pin drop when Mr. J walked into the classroom. He had on a look that appeared, to me, to be almost as menacing as it was mocking. He wiped down a desk and, after setting his books on it, turned to attack the chalkboard, wiping off everything that was written on it. Next, he wrote the course title and the topic for the day. Finally, he turned to face the class, introduced himself, and announced the topic loudly: “Effective Communication.” Continue reading “Mr. J will go to Heaven”
But God said to Jonah, “Do you do well to be angry for the plant?” And he said, “Yes, I do well to be angry, angry enough to die.” And the Lord said, “You pity the plant, for which you did not labor, nor did you make it grow, which came into being in a night and perished in a night. And should not I pity Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know their right hand from their left, and also much cattle?” Jonah 4:9-11
A quick background story: God had sent Jonah on sort of a ‘special op’ – into dangerous territory, to deliver a not-so-friendlymessage. And because Jonah knew how God often operated, he was banking on watching Nineveh burn because he was sure the people there would not change their ways. But when Jonah’s message of doom reached the king of Nineveh – notice that Jonah did not personally deliver the message to the king – something unexpected happened: the king ordered all his people to repent and seek God, hoping that God would turn away His promised punishment (Jonah 3:6-9). Guess what happened next? God did turn away His promised punishment when He saw their sincere repentance; but for Jonah, this was a very upsetting development. Nineveh deserved to be punished! Continue reading Jonah’s Rage – Giving Up Control
While there is a lot I am learning lately, this is the one lesson that stands out to me. It is one thing to know something, and another to understand what you know. Sometimes we can learn from the same experience over and over again. Our experiences help make and shape us. Looking forward is wonderful, but sometimes it is important to look in the rear mirror – not for regret, but for understanding.