Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Runaway Fish Prophet, Part 3

How exactly does one go about tossing someone into the raging sea?

Because he didn't think he could do it.

The day had started out like any other. The sky was blue, the cargo was loaded, and the sea was calm.

Perfectly calm.

Now the waves rose higher then the sails, the sky was black, and rain pelted his face. A passenger claimed it was his fault because he was running from his God. He told them to throw him into the sea, but he couldn't do it. He had instructed his men, much to their dismay, to keep rowing.

It had been hours. 

A tempestuous wave slammed into the boat, knocking him off his feet. Struggling to stand, he knew what he had to do, no matter how horrible the idea sounded. There was no other solution. 

The man - Jonah - locked eyes with him. He held Jonah's unyielding stare, and nodded. 

"Grab him." His voice broke. He looked up to the darkened heavens. "Lord, don't let us perish for this man's life. Don't lay on us innocent blood, for you, oh Lord, have done as it pleased you."

Several of his men picked Jonah up without any struggle. Then they tossed him into the raging deep.

And then the sea ceased its raging.

Based on Jonah 1:12-15

How exactly does one go about tossing someone into the raging sea?

I mean, really. Think about it.

How does someone with a soul do that to another person?

I've never really thought about the captain's (group of men, or whoever ultimately decided to throw him into the sea) part in this chain of events. He was clearly resistant to the idea. The men kept rowing and rowing, desperately trying not to toss this crazy man to certain death. This man didn't believe in God, and he didn't want to kill Jonah. 

So what was he supposed to do?

"Therefore they called out to the Lord, 'O Lord, let us not perish for this man's life, and lay not on us innocent blood, for you, O Lord, Have done as it pleased you.'" So they picked up Jonah and hurled him into the sea, and the sea ceased from its raging. Then the men feared the Lord exceedingly, and they offered a sacrifice to the Lord and made vows." Jonah 2:14-16

Sometimes I feel like God doesn't make sense. 

But then I read something like this, and I remember how intricately God has woven the details of our lives.

If this captain had kept fighting God's will for Jonah, then he and his crew would have died. Jonah could have died a prophet who abandoned God. Instead, all of the men on that ship turned their lives over to God, and Jonah had another chance to turn from his sin.

God, you are so cool!

"So shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it." Isaiah 55:11

Sometimes God's will seems like a big bag of weird. It just doesn't make sense, but it doesn't have to make sense to us. We just need to stop fighting Him so that He can turn the raging sea of our lives into the calm water in His plans.

V. Joy Palmer

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