Friday, March 21, 2014

The trouble with Jonah, and me too...

The words in the photo are the words of Jonah recorded in verse 9 of the first chapter of Jonah.
He spoke these words after God told him to go to Ninevah and warn the city of coming judgment.
He spoke these words after he got on a ship and headed in the exact opposite direction of God's instructions.
He spoke these words to the "false god worshipping sailors" on the ship who woke the slumbering Jonah up because the ship was being tossed about in a terrible storm sent by the One True God due to Jonah's disobedience.
The captain of the ship asked Jonah to pray to his God to spare their lives.
The crew cast lots to see who was the cause of the horrible storm.
Jonah was revealed as the culprit.
He readily confessed that he was running away from the very God who he claimed to worship,
the very God that he declared was the Maker of heaven, earth and sea.
It seems to me there was a mighty big chasm between Jonah's "say-er" and Jonah's "do-er".
Surely, if you really, really believe that God is Who He says He is,
then wouldn't you have a bit of the fear of the Lord when it comes to doing what He says?
Wouldn't you revere Him enough to obey Him?
Joy Dawson, in her book, Intimate Friendship with God, says that the fear of the Lord is evident in the life of a person by the fact that they do what God says wholeheartedly and quickly.

When I am teaching children about salvation and asking Jesus to be their Savior and Lord,
I explain that the word Lord means letting God be the Boss of your life.
My life verse goes along with that thought.
It's 1 Corinthians 6:20, "For you were bought at a price, therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's.
I am twice God's.
I am His creation.
 I'm His because He made me.
I am also His because He redeemed me. 
He bought me back from sin and satan though the death and resurrection of His Son, Jesus.
Hasn't He earned the right to rule my life?
Hasn't He proved His love and trustworthiness over and over and over?
Yes, yes He has.
And yet, I've pulled a Jonah a time or two or a hundred.
Maybe it's not been as dramatic as Him telling me to go east and I've headed west instead,
but there's been many a time He's told me to keep silent and I've insisted on having my say.
He's told me to reach out to someone and I've let fear win over obedience.
He's told me to forgive and let it go and I've kept a record of wrongs instead.
It's all disobedience.
It's me wanting to be the boss of my own life.
It's me not revering God enough to obey wholeheartedly and quickly the minute He speaks.

I thank God that the story of Jonah is one of repentance and of God's mercy and forgiveness
for Ninevah and for Jonah.
My story is one of repentance and of God's mercy and forgiveness, too.
Thank God.

still following,

Linking with She Reads Truth

Scripture and Snapshot



  1. Elizabeth, so great to read your post! I am so thankful for the love and pursuit God has for me (and you) even when I pull a Jonah. He loves us at our worst and gives grace! His grace amazes me.

    1. Ashley, I am in totally agreement. How grateful I am for God's love and pursuit of me.

  2. Elizabeth, thank you for sharing your thoughts on Jonah's story, which is "our" story so many times in our lives. As Ashley commented, I am so thankful that God still pursues us even when we are being disobedient. We serve such an awesome God who is full of so much love and grace towards us!

    1. I'm so thankful as well for His pursuit of me, and for His love, mercy and grace!

  3. and I pray
    may we be willing
    to be willing
    to surrender

    1. Amen to that. I think of the verse about Him helping us "to will and to do His good pleasure".

  4. I've pulled a Jonah a time or two or a hundred, too.

    1. I'm afraid we've all been guilty. Thank God for His forgiveness, mercy and grace!

  5. Yes, yes, yes. And for me at least, disobedience is usually a sign of a trust issue with God. It's times like those when I ask the Lord to increase my faith. I love the lessons in Jonah. And I love how the sailors responded - they certainly knew who Jonah's God was! Have a blessed Saturday, Elizabeth!

    1. June, I agree with you about the response of the sailors. It seems they were more responsive to God than Jonah!

  6. Thank you Elizabeth for letting God speak to my heart through you. God bless you and your family. Sherry

    1. Thank you , Sherry! I'm enjoying this little book of the Bible.

  7. Jonah is such a reminder that being willfully stubborn is going to get you into a heap of trouble. If only I could get that through my thick skull once and for all and not do things the hard way!

  8. elizabeth, i enjoyed your post on jonah...and the things you both have in common. i can identify!

    1. Thank you, Martha! Oh, to reverence God more so that I'm not a Jonah and running the opposite direction of God's instructions!

  9. Good thinking, good sharing. We're going to be facing much of what Jonah did...maybe not running away from God, but serving Him in unusual manners we ever thought would be OK. I try to obey my Father. Hope I always can.

    1. I agree, Joanne. We will be challenged in our obedience in the days ahead.

  10. I've taught my children the term and prayed with them over the principle of first time obedience. It isn't easy to learn but I agree it's a sign of maturity in Christ a way of worship that says "I belong to Him". Thanks for lovingly pointing is all towards The Boss. Found you today at The Weekend Brew!

  11. I'm so thankful God doesn't give up on me, even when I am disobedient to His call on my life. Thanks for sharing! Have a lovely week!

  12. Yes, too often I am like Jonah. So very thankful for God's unending grace.


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