Are you a runaway?
‘But Jonah ran away from the LORD and headed for Tarshish…’ (Jonah 1:3, NIV).
God called Jonah and told him to go to Nineveh. He was to cry out against their wickedness and warn them of God’s anger if they refused to repent. But instead of going there, Jonah decided to run to Tarshish by ship. While going, the Lord hurled a great wind upon the sea and the ship was going to break up. Out of desperation, the men on board discovered by lot, that Jonah was the cause of their trouble. They threw him into the sea, and he was swallowed up by a great fish and was vomited on the dry land of Nineveh after passing three nights in the belly of that fish!
Because God cares so much about souls (Jonah 4:11), He appoints certain individuals for the task of saving them. Since He preferred Jonah for the job to any other person, He didn’t look for someone else. So He caused a terrible storm and stirred up a fish to swallow and vomit Jonah at Nineveh (1:4-7). A man who fails to carry out God’s assignment is a trouble not only to himself but to everyone around him (1:11,12).
Until a disobedient fellow says ‘yes’ to God, he risks being constantly bombarded with unnecessary troubles (1:15). And now, Jonah was stuck in the belly of the fish! He was to remain there for three days and three nights (1:17). What a nightmare! From there, Jonah’s prayer took a different dimension. Many times, the only time we get serious with prayers is when we are stuck. This is when other methods have failed us. So, we call upon God out of desperation. For Jonah it took three days and nights. For others, it might take weeks, months or (I am afraid to say) years!
It’s important not to do God’s work with a legalistic attitude but with a heart of love and compassion (4:1). The reason why God wants to send you at all is because God has designed it that by His word and work through you, souls shall be saved. The major reason why God gets angry with an unyielding servant is the salvation of sinners’ souls. So don’t joke with your ministry and bringing others to the Lord.
Do you have the call of God upon your life that you are running away from? You have to come back to it if you don’t want your situation to go from bad to worse. Besides, your concern for the entangled souls attached to your calling should compel you to heed this rewarding call. What is your own Tarshish today? Is it your job, spouse, comfort, unreadiness, procrastination or fear? I pray, may we not keep moving into deeper troubles in an attempt to avoid a divine mandate. In Jesus name!
Today’s Corporate Prayer: O Lord let me hear from you clearly what you have called me to be; and help me to be obedient to it. In Christ Jesus mighty name!
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Tabitha omobolanle Faleye is a lover of Christ and His works and a copy writer/content developer.