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8th October 2012
Jonah 4 depicts a rather dramatic Jonah displeased with God's decision to show mercy to the people of Nineveh. Jonah knew God to be a God of mercy and compassion, and he knew that if God saw true repentance from the people of Nineveh, he would spare them from His judgment. You would think this would cause Jonah to rejoice, yet his response was one of anger! The Amplified version of the Bible puts it like this:
"And he prayed to the Lord and said, 'I pray you, O Lord, is not this just what I said when I was still in my country? That is why I fled to Tarshish, for I knew that you are a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger and of great kindness, and [when sinners turn to you and meet your conditions] you revoke the [sentence of] evil against them.'" (Jonah 4:2)
After pondering Jonah's response, I started asking myself the following questions: how would I have reacted in the same situation? Do I really care about the lost? Am I willing to be inconvenienced so that God can use me to reach out in mercy and compassion?
Life can be so busy and full of distractions, I guess the challenge is to keep God at the centre and stay open for God to use us in whatever way He wants. God wants us to have hearts and minds that are open to Him and are aware of those around us, that we would be people who are always looking for opportunities to bless, encourage and reach out, so that God can show his compassion, grace and mercy. What a great God!
Reading: Jonah 4:2
Question: Do you have God's heart for the lost?
Next prayer meetings: Tomorrow at 12.30pm and Thursday at 7.30pm, both at THC
Posted by Clare Burford