Prayer: Thanks God, for your unconditional love. Amen
Reading: Jonah 3:1-5, 10 (Click to read text)
Stop and GROW: After reading the text, discuss/ponder the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's Book of Faith questions, which are part of Camp Mount Luther's GROW Time with campers.
QUESTION 1: What scares, confuses, challenges, or doesn’t make sense to me in this text?
QUESTION 2: What delights me in this text or is my favorite part of the story?
QUESTION 3: What stories or memories does this text stir in me?
QUESTION 4: What is God up to in this text?
Reflection: The prophet Jonah is one of the persons included in this summer’s camp curriculum. At first glance, he is a bit of an odd choice. How often do we read Jonah? And besides being swallowed up by a “large fish,” (1:17) what more do we remember about Jonah? More importantly, what does the little book of Jonah tell us about God? After asking those questions, maybe the choice of Jonah is a good one.
The passage we read today certainly reflects the theme of the summer curriculum, A Love that Never Ends. After hearing God’s judgment delivered by Jonah, the people of Nineveh “believed God,” and repented of their evil ways (3:6). God changed his mind and did not punish the city. God loved the people. Enough to point out their sinfulness and enough to be gracious and merciful (4:2). Indeed, A Love that Never Ends.
I am reminded of one of Martin Luther’s uses of the law—it drives us to the grace and love of God. Sometimes, however, we need to be reminded that we fall short. That there are thoughts and actions that are not pleasing to God. And try as we might, we always find ways to mess up. What to do? What to do? Trust in the love of God. A love that never ends. --Jim Bricker, Camp Mount Luther Chaplain to the Summer Staff
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