Wednesday, March 16, 2011
your breakers and your billows passed over me
I love the imagery in scripture.Water has been the theme of the last several days and my musings;lush watered gardens,dropping down dew,raging streams,little red boats.Today it continues with whales,breakers and the erstwhile prophet,Jonah.
The Lord spoke to Jonah's heart that He wanted repentance preached to the people of Nineveh who were far from Him.Understandably, Jonah had other plans.I can read his mind:"What,What? They will stone me,they will mock me or worse ignore me.This is too much ,I must be hearing wrong.I think I'll flee to where I won't hear this ridiculous request.So he tries to escape in a boat and the rest is history.
I understand how difficult this is;to say what God wants said.The thought bubbles up inside you and you try to ignore it.It persists and no matter what you do, it keeps coming back.And with pounding heart, you make a call to someone you think so much of, to tell them of God's love.You do not have that kind of relationship with this friend and their opinion of you is important.You know what you say will be mocked in some way but you must call and you do.I found out,many years later, that the Spirit so loved this person that the call was transformative.
I think of when I have turned from God and how this description of Jonah's is apt:
"The waters swirled around me,threatening my life;the abyss enveloped me ;seaweed clung to my head....When my soul fainted within me ,I remembered the Lord;My prayer reached you in your holy temple".Jonah 2-6,8.
Isn't this what it feels like to be cut off from the Lord?Rudderless,being tossed about by every wind? Scratching around looking for that one thing that will make you happy?
The people of Nineveh reformed after Jonah finally took up his mission.Maybe it was the seaweed in his hair or the look of stark fear on the face of a man who had nearly drowned.Christ is telling us that we have a greater sign than Jonah,Himself.