November 3 I Wednesday
“‘Pick me up and throw me into the sea,’ [Jonah] replied, ‘and it will become calm. I know that it is my fault that this great storm has come upon you.’” —Jonah 1:12
Have we ever found ourselves caught between a rock and a hard place? The sailors on board a ship with Jonah were facing a violent storm. After casting lots, they realized that Jonah’s rebellion from God was the reason why they were in the storm. Jonah told the sailors the way to calm the sea was by throwing him overboard.
It is interesting that Jonah did not simply offer to jump off the ship. Rather, Jonah placed his life in the hands of the sailors. The choice to throw Jonah overboard was tantamount to murder, so the sailors made their decision to try their hardest to get back to shore. The more they resisted, the more the storm raged against them. The reality is that they were not resisting the storm, they were resisting God Himself. Hence, as the storm grew wilder and wilder, it seemed the only choice God wanted the sailors to make was to throw Jonah overboard.
This event proves that disobedience brings consequences. If a child disobeys, there are consequences attached to their disobedience. Likewise, in the natural laws of our society, if we break the law, we will get punished. Sometimes, in our modern sensibilities, we try to domesticate God, but the truth is if we run from God, there are consequences.
Maybe some of us are in that place today, where we are resisting God and the storms are raging around us. The seas are growing rough in our life, and the harder we try to get to shore, the fiercer the storm grows. No matter what we do, things are getting worse and not better. Deep down—if we honestly admit—we are defying God, running the opposite direction as we try to get away from Him. We may try to convince ourselves that it is not God that we are resisting, but simply the situation or problem in our life. In fact, we could try to justify ourselves before God countless times, telling Him the litany of reasons that it is not us who are the problem, but others. Regardless, the bottom line is that we are not fighting against a circumstance or a situation in our life, we are fighting against our Creator.
Can I give one piece of encouragement today? Let go. Whatever baggage we have been carrying around for so long is too heavy and is weighing us down. As we surrender our burdens, our situations and our problems to God, we can trust Him to heal our pain, our anger and even our pride. May we let go and let Him take hold of and lead us.
Prayer: Father God, the heavy baggage I am carrying around, I am letting it go into Your hands. I trust in Your healing hand over my pain, anger and pride. Thank You, Father.