“You get what you get, and you don’t throw a fit.”
I first heard these words when a preschool teacher was handing out popsicles. There was a cacophony of demands rising from the little voices surrounding her: “I want an orange one!” “Purple!” “Red!” The teacher laid down the law: a popsicle is a popsicle. You get what you get.
For seven verses, God has told the Israelites you get what you get. “Choose to walk away, and you will experience the consequences of your choices. Follow another god and you will find yourselves enslaved and far from home.” Then, in a seemingly sudden reversal, God is gathering the children into God’s arms, where the popsicle supply never runs out.
I am God and no mortal, the Holy One in your midst, and I will not come in wrath (v. 9b). In the end, the love of God is so much more persistent than the waywardness of God’s children. We will fail, there will be consequences, God will call us back. We will fail, there will be consequences, God will call us back. God will never stop calling us back home.
Our mortality makes this so hard to understand. We can’t imagine there being infinite forgiveness because we don’t have infinite eyes. We can’t imagine God loving us no matter what because we struggle so much to love ourselves that way. We see dimly, so we do not understand being fully known. Hear the good news one more time: the view of God is long, the love of God is eternal, and the patience of God is never-ending.
What within yourself are you struggling to forgive? What would it be like if you could love yourself the way God loves you?
When I try to wrap my mind around just how much you love me, I am astonished and amazed all over again. I don’t know what else to say but thank you, God. Thank you. Amen.