The word of the Lord came to Jonah son of Amittai: “Go to the great city of Nineveh and preach against it, because its wickedness has come up before me.” But Jonah ran away from the Lord and headed for Tarshish. Jonah 1:1-3
How is it possible to be so wrong when we assume we are right? This has happened to each of us, although some won’t admit to it. It’s just too scary to think we may be mistaken. However there is one sure way to know we’re wrong; when we disagree with God. Jonah, the prophet, had this exact experience.
God’s plan was to save a city, Nineveh, from its sinful ways. He called upon His top prophet to go and preach to them. Jonah thought God was wrong and decided to go in another direction. He “knew” those people didn’t deserve forgiveness and he knew there was no way he was going to listen to God; funny how that sounds. If God wants us to hear him it’s going to happen. He usually gets His way. God may use various methods to get our attention. A surprising set of circumstances, or an impossible situation could be God’s way of getting us to listen.
It’s just better to always assume we might be in error and keep an open mind, one ready to hear the voice of God. He still speaks. He chooses different methods; don’t expect to always hear an audible voice, although He could use that method. Often God speaks through his word and also uses those that teach and preach.
Jonah after refusing God’s command found himself in a surprising and impossible situation, the belly of a fish! You can’t possibly be more wrong than that. It took Jonah 3 days to be fully convinced and then God released him from the fish and allowed him to complete his mission to Nineveh. A city was saved.
How long does it take to figure out God is right? How long do we have to suffer before we figure out that God’s way is better, better than being stuck in a fish, or whatever our circumstances might be? A life might be saved and that life might be our own.
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