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Are you a Jonah?

I know that it has been awhile since I last wrote but I have been studying and learning myself. And when God needs me to be silent, then silent I will be. We all know the story of Jonah and the whale. A lot of people I know say that Jonah was a myth or a fable, but I always ask; do you believe the rest of the Bible? And most answer yes I do. So then how come you can't believe that God, our awesome and amazing God, could not put a man in the belly of a fish? They just don't have the answer. Do you think that Creator God could not control one fish? I seriously doubt God that spoke the Earth into existence could not tell that whale to swallow Jonah up. God divided the Red Sea and then let it go back when trouble was coming but he could not command one fish to swallow a man up. But I do know that Jesus saw the book as history. In fact, in Matthew 12:40, Jesus says this: "For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth." Jesus just compared His resurrection to Jonah and the whale. So if Jesus said it do you believe it? I think we are like the people of Israel: Mark 4:12; "so that seeing they may see and not perceive. And hearing they may hear and not understand, lest they should turn and their sins be forgiving them." So back to Jonah. God has called Jonah to go Nineveh to give them God's word. What does Jonah do, he runs completely in the opposite direction. Look at verse 3- "But Jonah arose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa, and found a ship going to Tarshish; so he paid the fare, and went down into it, to go with them to Tarshish FROM THE PRESENCE OF THE LORD." Now stop right there, Jonah was a prophet of God. He knew what God commanded and he knew there was no escaping God. But Jonah knew He could not hide from God but what He did know was that God was loving and kind and God did allow man to choose what he would do. Jonah was running from the will of God. And we know God, He will pursue you. God has purpose for your life and He will pursue you no matter how long He has to wait, whether the good or the bad. So if you are like Jonah, do you think that if you run far enough in the opposite direction of the will of God, He will no longer use you? Let's continue on then. Jonah got on this boat and they started to sail. God caused a mighty storm to come. All the men were praying to their own gods. So they wake Jonah because he was sleeping and tell him about the storm. Look at verse 7: "And they said to one another, 'come, let us cast lots, that we may know for whose cause this trouble has come upon us.' So they cast lots, and the lot fell on Jonah." Now look at it this way, they throw some dice and whoever the three dice land on that is who brought all this trouble. Now you have to remember they are in the middle of the sea in a major storm. They think they are all about to die and these three dice land on Jonah. No one but our powerful and awesome God could do that. So now Jonah is at a crossroads, just like we come to when we run from God, he has to tell all these people who and what he has done. If Jonah doesn't then the lives of these men would be on him, not just their physical being but also their spiritual. Because the Bible told us that they prayed to their gods. So they threw Jonah into the storm. Now Jonah created this mess all by himself. Don't we do that sometimes? And then just like Jonah we are swallowed up but look at chapter 2. Jonah prays to God. And we do to because we don't see a way out of the storm. But weren't we the ones that ran from God in the first place? We were the ones that got us in this mess and we expect God to come in and save the day. But look at 2:10: "So the Lord spoke to the fish and it vomited Jonah onto dray land." That is what He does for us. He takes us through the storm and puts our feet on solid dry land. Then He cleans us up and makes us a shiny new vessel for Him. But do we do what Jonah did next? Jonah went on and did what God wanted him to do in the first place. So is God calling and you are running? Don't be a Jonah and do it the hard way, do it God's way. Have a blessed day and RISE UP1

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