” But to Jonah this seemed very wrong, and he became angry. He prayed to the LORD, “Isn’t this what I said, LORD, when I was still at home? That is what I tried to forestall by fleeing 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, LORD, take away my life, for it is better for me to die than to live.” - Jonah 4 : 1-3 (NIV)
Jonah makes an astounding declaration to God. He tells God he would rather die than be reconciled to His gracious will.
How often are we faced with God’s plan for our lives and we let our own desires, fears or insecurities stand in the way of doing what we know is right? How often do we turn our backs and run from God? You see, Jonah knew what he was supposed to do, but he ran anyways. He let his hate for his enemies stand in the way of God’s mission for him, to reach a group of lost, sinful people with his message.
But God has a way of working things out in the end. No matter how far or fast we run, we can’t get away from God. When it come down to the wire, we usually end up doing exactly what God had planned for us, the question is how much we have to go through to get there.
In Jonah’s case, he ran. He endured a violent storm at sea, was tossed overboard and was swallowed by a great fish. The fish spit Jonah out exactly where God had intended him to be in the first place and he preached the message that God intended him to preach. And the city of Nineveh as spared.
In the end, Jonah was still angry or literally, hot. Missing the point that God spared him in his own disobedience, why should he not do the same for Ninevah.
You see, God’s emphasis is on his plan. He is looking at a bigger picture than what you and I see, and the circumstances that He puts us in are a part of that bigger picture. Our concerns and comfort take second seat to his will. If we are children of God we ARE going to do what he calls and asks us to do. The route we take to get there is up to us.
So ask yourself today, am I running from God and some plan he has for my life? Am I already in the belly of the fish? And if so, where is he going to spit me out?