“The Lord gave this message to Jonah son of Amittai: “Get up and go to the great city of Nineveh ! Announce my judgment against it because I have seen how wicked its people are.” But Jonah got up and went in the opposite direction in order to get away from the Lord.” (Jonah 1:1-3 NLT)
So what did Jonah do? Instead of going to the Great City of Nineveh to announce Judgment as the Lord commanded, Jonah got up and went the opposite direction! Now, it is one to be angry with the Lord about where he is calling you to, but to receive the Word of the Lord and Decide to go the opposite direction is another thing all together. But that wasn’t the worse part of this whole situation. If you read closely, Jonah was going the over direction to get away from the Lord! So, Jonah hears the Word from the Lord and then decides, “Nah, I aint going to Nineveh and on top of that, I will try and run away from God!”
Running away from God? Sounds silly doesn’t? I wonder how far Jonah thought he would run that God could not reach him and in that exact moment, God spoke to my Heart and said, “Exactly, how many of my children have I called to serve me like Jonah but are running away?” All I could say was Wow. We are living in a world today full of Jonah’s. Men and Women of God who have received the word of the Lord, but since they felt that Calling was too big or too much from them that they started running the opposite direction.
I know there are many of us at some point in time when we decided to run away from God. We felt that it was easier to just fall back in the same situation that he had delivered us from, because it was to hard living up to what the Lord commissioned us to do. We all know the story of Jonah and how he ran away from God and ended up thrown off the boat and then swallowed up by a whale. For three days and nights he suffered inside the whale, but many of us have been suffering for years. It wasn’t until Jonah cried out and prayed to the Lord for Forgiveness that he was finally released from this horrible situation.
It took Jonah being swallowed by a whale to see the errors of his ways, but what will it take for us? What kind of situation do we have to go through for us to realize that running from God is just going to put us somewhere we don’t want to be. People always think sacrifice is better than obedience and I will tell you the truth by saying that this is a lie. It was a sacrifice for Jonah to even go the opposite direction away from the Lord. But if he was obedient to the Lord’s will, he would have never had to suffer like he did. There are many of us who suffer today and the Lord is saying,” Just be obedient and you shall suffer no more.”