Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Jonah

Most of us have heard of the story of  Jonah and the Big Fish. It's quite common actually. If I do a post about Jonah I'd probably be preaching to the choir. But honestly when we think of Jonah what are the first things that come to mind? Well, disobedience for one. When faced with a situation that I don't really want to do for the Lord I usually think in the back of my mind, "I don't want to be a Jonah." Really, I don't because through that story we do learn that God will have his way, despite us. God wanted the people of Nineveh to repent. And sure, God himself could simply turn their hearts towards Him, but He chose to use a man. A man who was called. I also think about how crazy it must have been for Jonah to seriously be willing to jump from the boat once he realized the storm was happening because of his disobedience. Rather than allowing all the people of the ship to suffer he was willing to kill himself? I mean in reality that is what was happening. When Jonah jumped was allowed to be thrown into the stormy waters what did he expect to happen? Heaven to open up or for dry land to appear? Whether he had faith that God would save him or not, it was quite a move on his part. Kind of like the akehdah, which is the Hebrew term for the event when Abraham was about to kill Isaac. At that moment that he had the knife in hand, Abraham was willing to accept the will of God, not fully knowing what it was at that moment.

God doesn't always show us the big picture. The Bible says that "we know in part," (1 Cor 13:9) and I guess he entrusts us with "the part" that we can handle at the time. Sometimes we just need to realize that the storms and trials in life really are sent to us by God to reveal our hearts. Sometimes I just want to change my situation when I need to let my situation change me. Jonah really didn't have a choice. He was called by God to preach repentance in Nineveh. Abraham didn't have a choice. He was commanded by God to kill his son, his inheritance, his promise. In both situations, God provided a way out, but only once they took a step of faith proving their obedience. Jonah's provision was a fish. Nice provision. If I was in the sea and was swallowed by a fish I highly doubt I would be thanking God. Sometimes the provision comes in a form that seems like a curse but is really a blessing in disguise. Maybe it's through that person that you can't stand, but God wants to bless you through them anyways!  So, when your children are giving you attitude problems, or if you feel like all you do is change diapers, all.day.long, don't lose heart, rather let God change your heart and use you for His glory! 
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