Jonah 2:7: “As my life was slipping away, I remembered the Lord. And my earnest prayer went out to you in your holy Temple.”
Why is it that after all of these years, I’m still so much like Jonah?
Granted, my current crises are far less dramatic than his. I’m still sitting on dry ground, relatively safe. But Jonah and I sure have some character flaws in common.
I think the biggie is pride.
Despite all Jonah and I have seen of the amazing power of God, we still charge forward in disobedience, running full speed in opposition to His will.
We don’t want to submit. We want to do things our way. Because Jonah and I have all the right answers. We don’t need God telling us what to think, what to do.
So we wait until we’ve messed things up beyond repair, and then—finally, when we are at the absolute end of our ropes—we throw up panicky prayers for God to turn it all around.
Yet I love that Jonah.
He is completely transparent (hate that word) and so much like me—stubborn, spiteful, prideful, rebellious. And still God chases us down and does whatever He needs to do to catch our attention, giving us chance after chance to stop running and start obeying.
How does Jonah’s story end? The Bible doesn’t tell us. Did he eventually have a change of heart? He must have, since this “reluctant prophet” wrote his own story that landed in God’s own book. But isn’t it funny that he didn’t take us through to the happy ending?
Thank You, Father, for always hearing us when we cry out to You. How lucky we are that You are a forgiving and merciful God, that You take the most resistant of us—like Jonah, like me—and turn us around to do Your work.
I’m sorry for all the time I’ve wasted, not just related to the blog or The Book, but throughout my entire life—days and years spent running away from You, when it’s such joy to simply fall into Your arms and watch what happens.
I love the changes You’ve made in my heart and the miraculous things I see You do when I become willing to simply say “yes.” Thank You for Your patience and for Your never-ending pursuit of rebels like Jonah. Like me. Amen.
Why do you suppose Jonah didn’t add just one closing paragraph to his story telling us about his change of heart? Why did he skip the happy ending?
Please comment below.