Now the Lord provided a huge fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.
From inside the fish Jonah prayed to the Lord his God. He said: “In my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me. From deep in the realm of the dead I called for help, and you listened to my cry. You hurled me into the depths, into the very heart of the seas, and the currents swirled about me; all your waves and breakers swept over me. I said, ‘I have been banished from your sight; yet I will look again toward your holy temple.’ The engulfing waters threatened me, the deep surrounded me; seaweed was wrapped around my head. To the roots of the mountains I sank down; the earth beneath barred me in forever. But you, Lord my God, brought my life up from the pit. “When my life was ebbing away, I remembered you, Lord, and my prayer rose to you, to your holy temple. “Those who cling to worthless idols turn away from God’s love for them. But I, with shouts of grateful praise, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the Lord.’ ”
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us
Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.
I can’t even fathom sometimes how truly great God is and how willing and for us He continues to faithfully be towards us even in the times when we reject Him. I was thinking about how some of us use so much energy to run the opposite way of God, when it’s so much easier to just flow in His grace. Makes me wonder what Jonah was thinking or feeling that would make him so bitter towards God. I wonder if he prayed and didn’t like God’s respond, or if the responsibility of being a prophet was too much, or if he had a loss and couldn’t find the why, maybe he was just simply tired. One thing was clear though, He didn’t like that God showed mercy towards his enemies (makes me wonder if Jonah ever thought why them and not me). Whatever was going on his heart was definitely affecting his relationship with God, yet God went after him trying to show Jonah the forgiveness He brings to us even when we don’t deserve it. Three days and three nights Jonah was in the whales belly and I wonder if he was in the whale that long because it took him that long to make that bold prayer (even though it wasn’t ideal, leave that for another time). Surrending is never easy, I know I’ve surrendered even when I still felt like I was treated unfairly, like a bratty child with a parent. Nevertheless, like Jonah, I know the God who created me, created the seas and the dry land, a merciful, forgiving, a true Savior of my life, therefore, I knew that surrendering and humbling myself was the way to go. I want to ask you something. How long will you stay in the belly of the whale? How long will you sulk? How long will it take for you to surrender? How many times will God have to show you how much He loves you? Oh! Our God is ever so willing. Willing to say yes to whatever we ask in agreement with His will. I tell you, whatever that “thing” is that stands between you and God, bring it to the throne, lay it down, surrender it, bitterness, disappointment, sadness, loss, anger, jealousy, betrayal, hate, arrogance, pride, whatever it is, I urge you not to waste anymore time and let God start healing your heart from all that overtakes it and brings you to a place of uncertainty and bitterness. Don’t let pride rob you of what already belongs to you. God wants to show you His great mercy and grace, shower you with love and favor. Make that prayer, surrender.
Father God, I came boldly to surrender all that I’m feeling and it isn’t all good and positive but I know that you are the only one that can change a heart. I don’t want to run from you anymore, I don’t want to have bitterness in my heart, I surrender my ego, my pride, my all to you who knows me like no one else and who loves me unconditionally, you who forgives without condemnation. I accept your word, your love, your forgiveness, your grace. Thank you for showing me mercy and most of all for allowing me to surrender over and over. Holy Spirit be my guide in the Lord’s path, shine the light in the way I should go that I may never be lost. Thank you Abba. In Jesus name Amen.