“One’s real life is often the life that one does not lead.”
We are all familiar with the story of Jonah being swallowed by the fish because of his disobedience to God’s word. Another great lesson in the story is one about dealing with self-centeredness, anger and depression. Jonah was told by God to go to the great city of Nineveh and tell them if they did not change their ways, within forty days they would be destroyed, and he did this. They repented and were spared, this goes down as one of the greatest revivals know to mankind. But the problem was that Jonah was hoping that they would experience disaster. When they were spared, Jonah became “hot headed.” The Hebrew word used for anger is “charah,” and has a meaning of glowing or growing warmer, to blaze up, and to burn. After Jonah’s anger he became isolated, depressed, and was on the pity pot of self-pity. God sent a little worm to show Jonah life’s real values. Today may I keep an eye out for the little worms in life that might be here to show a demonstration of God’s love. Share with me these verses of Scripture……..JRE
This change of plans upset Jonah, and he became very angry. So he complained to the LORD about it: “didn’t I say before I left home that you would do this, LORD? That is why I ran away to Tarshish! I knew you were a gracious and compassionate God, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love, I knew how easily you could cancel your plans for destroying these people. Just kill me now, LORD! I’d rather be dead than alive because nothing I predicted is going to happen.”
The LORD replied, “Is it right for you to be angry about this?”
Then Jonah went out to the east side of the city and made a shelter to sit under as he waited to see if anything would happen to the city. And the LORD God arranged for a leafy plant to grow there, and soon it spread its broad leaves over Jonah’s head, shading him from the sun. This eased some of his discomfort, and Jonah was very grateful for the plant.
But God also prepared a worm! The next morning at dawn the worm ate through the stem of the plant, so that it soon died and withered away. And as the sun grew hot, God sent a scorching east wind to blow on Jonah. The sun beat down on his head until he grew faint and wished to die. “Death is certainly better than this!” He exclaimed.
Then God said to Jonah, “Is it right for you to be angry because the plant died?”
“Yes,” Jonah retorted, “even angry enough to die!”
Then the LORD said, “You feel sorry about the plant, though you did nothing to put it there. And a plant is only, at best short lived. But Nineveh has more than 120,000 people living in spiritual darkne3ss, not to mention all the animals. Shouldn’t I feel sorry for such a great city?”
Jonah 4:1-11 …………Life Recovery Bible, page 1063
Jonah had hoped that God would destroy the people of Nineveh, after all they were an enemy of Israel, and Jonah being a prophet possibly could see their future invasion of the northern kingdom. But it didn’t work out the way Jonah wanted it too, and he pouted, got bummed out, and wanted to die. It was all about what Jonah wanted. My alcoholism used to do the same thing to me, I would not get my way and I would isolate in a little hot trailer in the sun. That’s a lesson that I am still learning. It ain’t about me! When I come to see that my joy grows when I am there for others, God is able to do for me what I could not do for myself………………….JRE