Monday, June 15, 2015
The Jonah Principle, part 1
This is part 1 of a 4 part series on something I am calling "The Jonah Principle." In the short book of Jonah God deals with a man and his response to God's invitation.
Each of us make choices. Those choices have consequences. The consequences are not always up to us. Our choices take us in one of two directions and after our choice the results aren't always in our control. For Jonah the invitation was to serve God and speak for him to a people Jonah hated.
He said no.
Chapter 1 of Jonah is the story of Jonah's response to God- HE RAN AWAY. He said "NO!" His response is systematic, intentional and in the opposite direction of the one God asked him to take. Once we respond to God's invitation with a yes or a no we choose our path. And on that path are consequences we may not like.
For Jonah the consequence was a big fish and a dark, smelly descent into the sea. You can choose your response to God, but you can't choose what might be next.
Principle #1 of the Jonah principle is this- after you make your choice there are consequences you can't choose.
Jonah found himself in the prison of his own choice...the belly of a fish. When we say "no" to God that isn't the end of our encounters with this one who invited us to say "yes". Often we will find ourselves in a dark place as we contemplate our choice.
"How's that working out for you?" God asks. And there we sit as we ponder our rebellion, as we reconsider our response to the one who made us....the one who called us.