Thursday, November 09, 2006

Life lesson number 2: Second chances, forgiveness, human nature...

Today, while Jakob was napping, I got all excited and did a little housework (I'm sure Granny will be excited, too). I reran the dishwasher (it didn't do a good job the first time, grr), did some baby laundry, swept the kitchen, and vacuumed.

As I was vacuuming, I came upon two pieces of purple thread. Now, this vacuum cleaner SUCKS, in the best way possible, so they came up with no problem. But still, I was reminded of a line in an email I received a few months ago about human nature.

"Isn't it funny that we will go over one piece of thread with a vacuum cleaner FIVE TIMES, then pick it up and look at it, and THEN put it back down to give the vacuum cleaner OOONE more chance?"

And as I thought about this quirk of human nature, I realized the irony. Get ready now, this next line was a Big Moment for me!

Isn't it funny how, in this day and age, we humans have more faith in a vacuum cleaner (or other inanimate object) than other humans? How many chances do we give our inanimate objects to perform their tasks correctly (see above: Sunny REruns dishes in dishwasher), while giving fellow humans only one chance (if that) before giving up and labeling them as failures.


Jakob, here is what I want you to take from this today.

Human nature says: "Fool me once, it's your fault... fool me twice, it's mine."

But the Bible says (as Sunny busts out her not-as-cool-as-Kris's-new-Bible Hardcover-Edition-Study-Bible):

Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?
Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.
(Matthew 18:21-22 KJV)

(and of course, I have to include the notes at the bottom, because they are SO cool)

'The rabbis taught that people should forgive those who offend them three times. Peter, trying to be especially generous, asked Jesus if seven (the "perfect" number) was enough times to forgive someone. But Jesus answered, "Seventy times seven" (the number of eternity), meaning that we shouldn't even keep track of how many times we forgive someone. We should always forgive those who are truly repentant, no matter how many times they ask.'

So Jakob... always remember... if the vacuum cleaner needs more than one chance to pick up the thread, Jesus says that you have to go over it 490 times.


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