Do You Know What Jonah Knew? Today’s readings are Jonah 1 – 4 and II Timothy 2.
Do You Know What Jonah Knew?
Today’s readings are Jonah 1 – 4 and II Timothy 2. We are reading from the New Living Translation.
Do you know what Jonah knows? Jonah knew something really important about God, that frustrated him and made him run in the other direction. It’s not what you might think. Jonah knew that God was full of mercy, and it made him run in opposite direction.
Jonah knew that God was full of mercy,
I knew that you are a merciful and compassionate God, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. You are eager to turn back from destroying people. (Jonah 4:2)
Jonah knew this about God and, ironically, it made Jonah want to run the other way. But God was doing a work in Jonah’s heart, just as he was going to do a work in the hearts of tens of thousands, in the city of Ninevah. These dear people were about to experience God’s mercy, kindness, and grace. They were about to experience the love of God and be made new. Because that is who God is, and that is what God does.
Jonah knew it. Do you know it? Do you know that God is merciful, compassionate, and desires to draw you close when your heart feels far? This is what Jonah knew and what the people of Ninevah learned.
Jonah also knew that God was arranging his story.
He arranged for a fierce storm to blow down on Jonah.
He arranged for a giant fish to swallow Jonah.
He arranged for a giant leafy plant to grow over Jonah’s head.
He arranged for a worm – to eat that plant.
He arranged for a scorching east wind to blow down on Jonah.
God is an Arranger! He is arranging His story in such a way that nations and people come to discover that God loves all people, everywhere. He is arranging our story that we might come to know just how loving and gracious he really is. God is making all things new. And He invites us to proclaim God’s message of grace and love to this broken world, and to experience the joy of it.
Jonah knew some things. The Ninevites learned some things. How about you and me? Do we know what they knew? Do you know that you are loved by a merciful and compassionate God, who is slow to anger and filled with unfailing love and that He is arranging your story? Do you know it? Do you know it better than Jonah? Play your part in proclaiming this message of unfailing love all the days of your life.
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