Septic Tank Technicians

God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way. God relented of the disaster which he said he would do to them, and he didn't do it. But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was angry. Jonah 3:10'4:1 WEB.

It was early morning during a hot summer in the South, and we were digging up a septic tank. After we located and shoveled the dirt off the lid, I grabbed a heavy bar off the truck, and we pried it open enough to get a hose inside the tank. There is nothing quite like the smell that came out of it. Needless to say, it was tough to keep my breakfast down.

For a period of my life, that is what I did to pay the bills. I was a septic tank technician that pumped out septic tanks and grease traps with a vacuum truck. When you get your first whiff of steaming decomposing sewage, it will not be a pleasant aroma, but I can tell you that it will be a lasting one. We would often service five or six tanks a day. Many times when we arrived, they were backed up and overflowing. It was a dirty job.

One thing I noticed early on was this: All the septic tanks smelled alike. Whether it was a church, a country club, a restaurant, a mansion on a hill, or a trailer park, when you opened up that septic tank, they all had the exact same smell coming out of them. They all reeked.

The prophet Jonah did not want to go to Nineveh and preach, but God persuaded him to go anyway. Jonah brought a message of wrath and destruction, but the entire city humbled itself after hearing it. They repented of their wicked ways and turned to God. He showed them mercy and spared them from the wrath that was coming. But Jonah became very angry because Nineveh did not get what he felt they deserved.

When God looked down from heaven, they all smelled the same to Him. At that moment, His prophet Jonah was behaving worse than those who were in Nineveh. Sin is bad, and everyone has it, including Jonah. There is no need to point at someone else's sin while God is nearly heaving from the smell of yours. Only the blood of Jesus removes this stench from us.

It took me a long time to figure out that God did not dislike the same people that I did. And that the people who have wronged us will get the same forgiveness we do if they ask Him for it. All of their past deeds will be wiped out if they repent, just like ours will. For example, before, during, and after a divorce, God loves both parties involved.

It is not that people are good, but because God is good, and He wishes no one would be lost. God loves you, those that dislike you, and those who vote differently than you. Thankfully, none who repent will get what they actually deserve. Mankind has a lot in common, and one thing is that we all need His forgiveness. Thank God it is there for the asking and completely free.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, please forgive me for judging others and help me to clean up my own life. Thank You for having mercy on us. Please give me the grace to show that mercy to others. In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen!

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