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Going In The Opposite Direction

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“Obedience Will Turn Us Around”

Jonah 1:1-5  NOW THE word of the Lord came to [a]Jonah son of Amittai, saying, 2Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and proclaim against it, for their wickedness has come up before Me.3But Jonah rose up to flee to Tarshish from being in the presence of the Lord [as His prophet] and went down to Joppa and found a ship going to Tarshish [the most remote of the Phoenician trading places then known]. So he paid the appointed fare and went down into the ship to go with them to Tarshish from being in the presence of the Lord [as His servant and minister].But the Lord sent out a great wind upon the sea, and there was a violent tempest on the sea so that the ship was about to be broken.5Then the mariners were afraid, and each man cried to his god; and they cast the goods that were in the ship into the sea to lighten it for them. But Jonah had gone down into the inner part of the ship and had lain down and was fast asleep.

Mark 16:14-16  Afterward He appeared to the Eleven [apostles themselves] as they reclined at table; and He reproved and reproached them for their unbelief (their lack of faith) and their hardness of heart, because they had refused to believe those who had seen Him and looked at Him attentively after He had risen from death]. 15And He said to them, Go into all the world and preach and publish openly the good news (the Gospel) to every creature [of the whole human race]. 16He who believes [who adheres to and trusts in and relies on the Gospel and Him Whom it sets forth] and is baptized will be saved from the penalty of eternal death]; but he who does not believe [who does not adhere to and trust in and rely on the Gospel and Him Whom it sets forth] will be condemned.

Today’s Reflection: Ok, for a minute, put yourself in Jonah’s shoes. God tells you to go to a certain city or place, he tells you that the city is wicked & to cry out against it. You might say “Me Lord, who am I to tell these people that they are wicked”.

Jonah thought he would slip away a take a little pleasure cruise! What he was really doing was being disobedient and fleeing from the presence of the Lord. You notice Jonah didn’t argue with the Lord, he just decided to slip away and go a different way than God had told him to go.

When God tells us to do something he already knows how we are going to respond. Jonah basically let his actions speak for what he couldn’t say to God. Jonah was saying by his actions, I’m out of here, you’ve got the wrong person for this job. Many times you will see that God called people who were not qualified according to other people’s standards. God uses the foolish things of the world to confound the wise. He takes what man rejects, throws away or disqualifies and looks at that person’s heart. Jonah needed a heart change. God was going to use the circumstances to give him another chance.

Take a step of faith today and trust God even when you know that it will be a hard thing to do. No matter what it is that God is asking you to do, he can help you to face any situation. The only way we build our faith is by trusting God, even when we can’t see what he has for us. So whatever changes you have to make in your life to move forward, don’t let doubt & unbelief or even rejection stop you from moving into everything that God has for you. Put one foot in front of the other, take God’s hand & say “lead the way Lord, I’am willing to do things your way”! God will always reward your obedience!