Jonah and how much is actually enough?

Published 6:05 pm Thursday, November 14, 2019

Food, clothing and shelter; those are the essentials for life. My dad was fond of asking, “How much is enough?” And for most of us, he would say, “A bit more than I now have.” Greed is not limited to the rich. Even a poor man can want more than he needs and even envy what someone else has. Food, clothing, and shelter are enough, but we all want more. 

In our United States, according to Money Inc, Vermont was number 20 with a median household income of $56,990, and Maryland was number one with a median household income of $75,847. 

Georgia was not in the top 20, but according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Forsyth County is the richest county in Georgia with a median household income of over $85,000, which is more than the median household income of the richest state. 

Telfair County, with a median household income of $26,634, is the poorest county in Georgia and one of the poorest counties in our nation, according to five years of census data analyzed by 24/7 Wall St. 

Both poor states and counties have three things in common including rural, relatively uneducated populations leading to high unemployment.

After Nineveh repented, “Jonah was very unhappy about this and became angry. So he prayed, ‘Lord, didn’t I say before I left home that this is just what you would do? That’s why I did my best to run away to Spain. I knew that you are a loving and merciful God, always patient, always kind, and always ready to change your mind and not punish.’” (Jonah 4)

All of this started when I asked myself, “Why was Jonah unhappy and angry?” Jonah was unhappy and angry because God forgave his enemies and blessed them. 

As a prophet of God, you might think he would celebrate God’s blessings? 

But for some reason, we’re jealous of God’s blessings unless they come to us. 

Some people even think we ought to take the blessings from one group and give them to another group. 

But that’s the earthly, human solution to solve all our problems with money and things, ignoring the consequence and making some people dependent on other people.

Maybe we should consider the people problem too? 

If we really want to help people, three solutions might be better transportation into rural areas, better educational opportunities in those areas, and better jobs? 

It might help if we remember we’re all created in God’s image, and solved our poverty problems by creating opportunities for people to grow into God’s intended image.