Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Lessons from the life of Jonah

This will be a long post I'm afraid as I'm a little long winded tonight, so bear with me. If you're like me, it takes a few hard knocks on the head to learn my lesson and even then I'm not guaranteeing anything. Do you ever feel like you just pray and pray and never receive victory over those areas in your life that are a struggle? When I was reading through the book of Jonah yesterday, I had one of those "light bulb" moments. I am still learning. God had commanded Jonah to go to Ninevah and preach repentance to the Ninevites, but he instead decided on his own to go by ship to Tarshish. Somehow he thought God would be ok with that I guess. While en route, God appointed a storm and Jonah was thrown overboard. In His mercy, God appointed a fish to swallow Jonah to protect him from the raging seas and commanded the fish to spew him onto dry land. If that didn't get his attention, I don't know what did. While in the desert on his way to Ninevah, he was a little overheated so he stopped to rest under a branch. Again, the Scriptures say that God again appointed a plant to shade him. Jonah, hating the plant, complained to God so God appointed a worm to eat the plant so it would die. Although Jonah reluctantly obeyed and went to Ninevah, God allowed over 600,000 people to be saved that day because of Jonah's obedience. Then Jonah got mad because God had mercy on the people and spared their lives. I wanted to say, "Um, Jonah did not God also have mercy and spared your life?...then why are you complaining?"

I thought of my own life and how reluctantly I have obeyed the Lord walking through this trial with Libby's surgery. I haven't always followed willingly, but God in His mercy is still pushing me along at times. I am walking a bit slow, but still holding on. I am trusting the Lord to do a mighty work through this situation, much like He did with Jonah. If people get saved, then it's all worth it. I am also encouraged by God's mighty power over his creation. He appointed a storm, a fish, a plant, and a worm to accomplish His purposes in Jonah's life. If God is that sovereign over creation how much more sovereign is He in my life and your life? He can use anything to accomplish His good will. I am excited about what He is going to do in us and through us in regards to this trial we must face, should He choose not to heal. Maybe there is something God is calling/asking you to do and you are reluctantly/dragging your feet. You might as well just go ahead and give in because you will sooner or later. It's not always fun, but He doedesire obedience rather than sacrifice. I am thinking of this precious hymn as I type this: "Jesus, Jesus how I trust you. How I've proved you ore and ore. Jesus, Jesus precious Jesus. Oh for grace to trust you more." I have proven Him...and found Him to ALWAYS be faithful!


Tefertiller Tribe said...

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass...

It's about learning to dance in the rain."

thought this would bless you as much as it has me this day!