It’s the middle of the week, friends! YAY!
And that means it’s time for Wednesday in the Word!
I so enjoy this time with you & I hope you do too.
I cannot even begin to describe how excited I am to share with you about this old testament book of The Bible. It’s real and applicable and totally speaking to my heart!
Since the #SheReadsTruth study is two weeks, I plan to talk about it this week & next week. I pray you will join me here AND at #SheReadsTruth…I think Jonah is applicable to you too.
Let’s get started…
Three weeks ago, while Luke & were getting ready for church we actually had the TV on. That’s unusual to the point that I don’t even think it’s ever happened before. Weird. But nonetheless, God used that to prepare my heart for this very study & this post.
On TV was a pastor talking about Jonah. I was so intrigued with the story he was telling. It wasn’t anything like I remember from Bible School or Sunday School when we colored the pictures of a boy & a whale. It was about a real man, struggling with a real calling, & really rebelling against God. The man being described was so similar to me, it was unreal. At the time I was rushed for time & didn’t give it another thought…until yesterday when I began the #SheReadsTruth study.
I finished yesterday’s reading & the devotion, but I couldn’t stop thinking about that sermon I had heard…I wanted to know more. I consulted my good friend, Google, & it led me right to it. I won’t post it here or go into too much detail but you can find it here. It’s a four part series & if you’re doing the #SheReadsTruth, I highly recommend digging deeper & watching these along with your reading.
I want to share with you a few of the things on my heart based on these two studies so far…
I am Jonah.
I am sure you’re thinking I am crazy right about now, but let’s see.
In the sermon video, the pastor asks a few questions…
- Have you ever hated anyone?
- Have you ever disobeyed God & hoped he wouldn’t notice?
- Have you ever tried to bargain with God?
- Have you ever questioned God’s calling?
- Have you ever complained or been angry with God?
- Have you ever made it right with God & immediately done something wrong again?
I am Jonah. I have done all of those things. Even this very moment I am questioning some of the circumstances God has a fellow friend & dear Christian woman in. I am complaining that it shouldn’t be happening to her. I doubt his ability to completely renew the situation. I. AM. JONAH.
If I am Jonah, I have a Nineveh.
God was calling Jonah to a offer his Mercy & Grace to the sin stricken, Nineveh. Not only was Jonah supposed to call out a city of wicked people doing crazy things, Jonah actually knew the people there. Can you imagine? God calls you to offer mercy to the meanest, most sinful person you know. Pretty SCA-RY if you ask me. It’s no wonder that Jonah ran away, right?
Wrong. There’s something in YOUR life – in MY life – that is just as scary & intimidating that God is calling us too. What is it? Will you pray for the strength to “go there”?
There is a bigger picture.
As Christians, we know the ending of the story. We know that Jonah survived & fulfilled his calling (but sinned again…and was forgiven again). The sweet message of redemption that I am finding in being Jonah is that God goes great lengths to bring me to him. In my wandering & in our intimate time, the God I serve – that you serve – is near & wants to be here more than anything. His will for our lives – even when we don’t agree – is the right plan.
If we look at an even bigger picture, we know that Jesus dying on the cross was not an easy calling – but is was absolutely necessary to reconcile us to God.
Our God goes incredible lengths to bring us to him.
My prayer today & the rest of this study is that I would learn from Jonah…because I am him. I pray that I will not doubt his plan and that I would prayerfully consider my calling as gain for his kingdom.
My heart is completely breaking for the cancer that returned to one of my closest friends. It is not her choice to accept this calling, but she is, because God has called her to it. Unlike Jonah, she’s not punching a ticket to “anywhere but Nineveh,” rather she’s fighting, through faith. Please remember her in your prayers, will you?
Frankly my dear…I Am Jonah.