Monday, July 18, 2011

Jonah's Anger

Our pastor has been spending some time in the minor prophets of the Bible for the last several weeks. Actually at both our “summer” church and our regular church we have been studying these. I love to see how that happens sometimes. And while the minor prophets always intrigue me a bit, I love to see how God uses the insignificant, you know, I really wasn’t expecting to get what I did from Jonah’s story.

We all know this one- Jonah fleeing, the storm at sea, swallowed by a great fish, then he listens. And that in all honesty is usually where I always stopped. I never paid much attention to Jonah 4. Well, it has my attention now.

For those of you like me- here is a recap. Jonah goes into Ninevah and warns the people that God is telling them that they have to repent and change their ways. They have 40 days and then God will bring his wrath upon them. Well, surprise surprise, the awful, horrible, no good, very bad, mean , evil Ninevites surprised everyone- especially Jonah, and repented! So, God was moved so much and happy with them, He changed His mind and had mercy on them. He spared them.

And Jonah, who should have been jumping up and down with delight because the people heard the message that he himself delivered from God, pouted. He was ticked. Really God? You are going to spare them? Them. Seriously? Do you KNOW what they DID?? Have you forgotten? Hmm… Jonah. What about you? Did you not that many weeks ago disobey me and run in the entire opposite direction of where I told you to go? Did you openly accept my grace and mercy? Why is my Grace only meant for YOU? I am here for the sinners.

At first, I sat there pointing my finger, pashawing Jonah from my comfy chair in church. Then God turned my pointy finger right back at me. You, Alicia? Really? Why do you think that my grace is only meant for you? You pray for Charlie Brown’s mom. You say you want her to heal and make it. You say you want her to know Me. Yet, when it looks to you like she is going to “win,” you sit there and pout. Except you won’t openly admit how very mad at me you really are. At least Jonah yelled at me. You hide in the shadows and have one foot pointed in the direction I told you NOT to go. I haven’t forgotten you. I have given you grace. I gave Jonah a vine to shade himself, and he let it die. I give you a support system and a church and friends to help you, and you run the other way so you don’t have to face them. Don’t let your vine wither away, too.

Bottom line, God IS in control. No matter how He wants it played out, that is how it will happen. He has His reasons. I don’t know why or how. I can’t stomp and pout just because it didn’t go how I thought it should. Doesn’t mean I won’t let Him know how I feel once in awhile. And yes, it really did take this sermon for me to realize how very angry I am. I feel the wall going up around my heart. Brick by brick I know I am allowing the devil to pull me away. I don’t want to feel anything because to do so, could cause me to crumble completely . And yes, even as I write that, I know that that is precisely where God will make Himself known to me and use me.

Linking up with Michelle and Jen

1 comment:

Jensamom23 said...

Wow, Alicia! Your honesty and insight is amazing. Continued prayers for you.