Have you ever had a Jonah moment? That moment when you hear about someone who has gotten into a little trouble but you are not surprised by it. Maybe you even spoke it out loud, “I’ve seen that coming a mile away.” To be honest, I have done that.
But the other day I was reading about Jonah and it hit me, I myself, am not too far off from where Jonah found himself. I’m sure you remember the Bible story from elementary school where God told Jonah to go and preach to the people of Ninevah, but Jonah disliked Ninevah, so he tried to go to Tarshish instead.
But God meant what He said, so He sent a big fish to swallow Jonah up and deliver him to the city. This infuriated Jonah and he said…
“O Lord, is this not what I said when I was still at home? That is why I was so quick to flee to Tarshish. I knew that You are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God Who relents from sending calamity. Now, O Lord, take away my life, for it is better for me to die than to live.” (Jonah 4:2O)
But God answered and asked, “have you any right to be angry?”
Jonah might get alot of grief from us for not following God’s commands, but we aren’t much different than him. Many times, I don’t want to go where God tells me and more times than I can remember, I haven’t liked what God has asked me to do, especially if it involves someone I don’t get along with or go somewhere where I dislike. However, the question God asked Jonah is the same for you and me…
“what right do we have to be angry?”
Pride and our past feelings sometimes get in our way of obeying God. Jonah had to put his prideful feelings down, he had to forgive some people and he had to accept that even people from Ninevah needed Jesus.
God desires for us to minister to everyone, bear one anothers burdens, and to live in harmony with our Christian brothers and sisters. His message is for everyone, especially those that might not surprise us by their sinful nature. He is asking us to go and find our Ninevites and tell them the good news.
You may have to take the highway, or walk across the street or click on Facebook to do it, but however you do it, don’t go by way of the fishes belly to get there.
“And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.” -Mark 11:25
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