“The word of the Lord came to Jonah son of Amittai: ‘Go to the great city of Nineveh and preach against it, because its wickedness has come up before me.’ But Jonah ran away from the Lord and headed for Tarshish.” – Jonah 1: 1-3a
Have you ever run from God? Perhaps you knew it was wrong, but it was fun so you tried to ignore that nagging of your conscience. Maybe God was asking you to trust Him in a big way financially, professionally or relationally, but the ask just seemed too big. So you tried to ignore God and stay busy. You attempted to distract yourself with anything but obeying – you decided to run from God.
Jonah ran from God. Instead of trusting God and heading towards the city of Nineveh (in modern day Iraq), Jonah hopped on a boat and headed towards Tarshish (modern day Spain). Now, running from God is always a bad decision and I’ll tell you why:
- We run into negative consequences. In Jonah’s case, God sent a huge storm that threatened the lives of Jonah and the entire ship’s crew.
- You can’t outrun from God. There’s no place we can run from the God of the Universe. He’s over it all. We can’t get away from Him. So why do we insist on arguing and trying to negotiate and convince God that we know better?
In the end, Jonah spent three days in the belly of a fish before finally being willing to obey God and head to Nineveh. What about you? Are you running from God? How is God trying to get your attention? The best place to be is in the center of God’s will. Until you obey – you will be miserable. Ask God for the courage and faith to trust Him rather than run from Him.