Travail precede passivity. Jonah’s disobedience was the start of his travail. The Bible tells us, “The Lord sent out a great wind on the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea, so that the sea was about to be broken up.” Read Jonah 1:4 (NKJV). “Why has this awful storm come down on us?” they demanded. “Who are you? What is your line of work? What country are you from? What is your nationality?” Jonah answered, “I am a Hebrew, and I worship the Lord, the God of heaven, who made the sea and the land.” The sailors were terrified when they heard this, for he had already told them he was running away from the Lord. “Oh, why did you do it?” they groaned.
And since the storm was getting worse all the time, they asked him, “What should we do to you to stop this storm…?” Read Jonah 1:8-10 (NLT). There is no escaping Gods purpose for your life; sometimes people would try to smoke, drink it away, go on a hiatus, move to another country all for the sake of running from Gods presence still does not work. The Bible says, and the “Lord sent out a great wind into the sea, and the sea was tempestuous against them as they tried to row harder to return to land.” Beloved, I strongly believe, there is a blessing in doing exactly what God wants than to exert energy and strength. The Bible clearly tells us, “Nevertheless the men rowed hard to return to land, but they could not, for the sea continued to grow more tempestuous against them.Read Jonah 1:13 (NKJV).
I am reminded of the verse of scripture where the Bible says, “You look for much, but behold, it comes to little; when you bring it home, I blow it away. Why?” declares the LORD of hosts, “Because of My house which lies desolate, while each of you runs to his own house.” Read Haggai 1:9 (NASB). Here the Lord was saying, we pursued everything else but His will for our lives. And that was exactly what Jonah was doing, and some of us are still doing; looking for satisfaction and joy and happiness outside the will, purposes and plan of God for our lives. Am I touching a nerve right now? I hope I am, because it is time for us to rise up to Gods call for our lives. And I suppose the reason we pursue everything else but God’s plan for us is because we don’t fully trust God with our lives. Well, you might say that can’t be right; but our actions give us away. Selah.
Watch this, people are suffering and going to hell because we are refusing to yield to the bidding of God. We would rather be doing something else other than Gods purpose. It is not meant to be so dearly beloved; God has nations on His mind, and we are living in this Century, to be the true “light of the world” and “salt of the earth.” The Kingdom of God has already come and it is wherever you are standing. In other words, we have been equipped with Gods ability to bring His righteous rule to bear in any situation, hence you and I have been sent; and many more are being sent to different parts of the world to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Hallelujah. We are not meant to be passive Christians, Oh no, a million times no. We have been called to be an active voice in government, schools, offices and in the market places. Mordecai warned Esther, “Do not think to yourself that in the king’s palace you will escape any more than all the other Jews.” For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place and you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not attained royalty for such a time as this?” Read Esther 4:13-14 (ESV). Don’t get carried away by what you have, your intelligence, and wealth; after all the Bible says, “It is ‘Gods ability’ at work in us, both to will and to do of His good pleasure.
I am sounding out a warning to the Body of Christ to which I also belong, to arise in the power of God, and stand for righteousness, integrity and character. We can’t go around walking on egg shells, wanting to be politically correct or afraid to declare, “thus saith the Lord.” Let me remind you, “I look up to the mountains; does my strength come from mountains? No, my strength comes from God, who made heaven, and earth, and mountains.” Read Psalm 121:1-2 (MSG). Beloved, your safety is not in your high walled residences, or estates or investments or portfolio’s; your safety is in who you are in Christ Jesus. Selah. Therefore, speak freely what God tells you without any fear of being intimidated by anyone.
Did you realise, Jonah’s travail endangered the lives of others, and at a critical point the Bible says, “The mariners were afraid, and cried every man unto his God.” Read Jonah 1:5 (KJV). Watch this, the Bible says, “But Jonah was gone down into the sides of the ship; and he lay, and was fast asleep.” Interesting to see that in the midst of a great wind, Jonah was fast asleep. Either Jonah was confident in God to save the ship or he was indifferent and nonchalant to the plight of the sailors!. Well I would say the latter, remember, Jonah was running away from God hence he boarded the sailors ship; which meant his presence on the ship brought along with it the wrath of God to bear on everyone in his path. And that was why I said, ‘Jonah’s travail endangered the lives of others.’
Is your disobedience a hinderance and a stumbling block to God’s plan and purpose for mankind? It is time for us to awake from slumber and stop being docile, indifferent, lackadaisical and lukewarm about the things of God. The Bible says, “Let us not allow slackness to spoil our work and let us keep the fires of the spirit burning, as we do our work for God.” Read Romans 12:11 (PHILLIPS). Let there be a hunger, passion and zeal for the things of God. There is a stirring in my spirit, hence I am writing what I believe the Holy Spirit has inspired in my thoughts and heart; and I cannot but speak what the Lord would have me say, irrespective of whose ox is gored. Recall the Bible says, “Teach us to number our days and recognize how few they are; help us to spend them as we should.” Read Psalm 90:12 (TLB).
Jonah brought the travail upon himself; but thanks be unto God, “God is so rich in mercy; He loved us so much.” Read Ephesians 2:4 (TLB). Hence, I am thankful to God for rescuing us from imminent danger and setting us on a path to fulfil His plan purpose and pursuits in Jesus Name. Amen.
We write You read Be encouraged.