Yesterday I wrote about how I used to be a runner. Today, in church, I learned I am still a runner. That is, figuratively speaking. As humans, we are always running, either toward or away from something. I like to think I’m running toward God’s plan for my life and not away from it, but it’s not always true. And when I say God’s plan for my life, I’m referring to the big picture of what I am called to do as a follower of Jesus.
- love my neighbor
- forgive peeps
- share my resources
- show n’ tell Jesus
Today at church, we had a guest speaker-Luke Crosby. He talked about the story of Jonah. That story used to make me cringe-not because it was a weird story about a whale swallowing a man, but because it was about obedience. Jonah pretty much ran as far as he could away from Ninevah, a place he was called to preach by um, God. He was afraid to do what was asked of him because, well, those people in Ninevah, they were known for killing people like him.
He didn’t want to die.
I shared earlier in the year about my own obedience story. It was about confronting my dad and telling him the truth that I stole money from him. I was scared to tell him, but it weighed heavily on my heart and mind… for a lot of years. To the point where God was like, We gotta do something about this. My guilt was holding me back from a lot of good things. God was asking me to trust and to follow Him. It took faith in turning and running toward Him.
Every single step was worth it.
But that Jonah story is different. He didn’t steal anything from the Ninevites. And my dad probably wasn’t going to kill me, even though I thought he might. In a way he did kill me, except it was with kindness. He said, Of course I forgive you. If I believe in Jesus, I need to forgive others as he forgave me. There was no hesitation in his words. But ONLY love.
He didn’t want the money back and even paid for my lunch.
During all those years of holding onto that guilt, I disliked the story of Jonah (even the veggie tales version!) because I knew in my heart, it was an obedience issue. The guilt was strong too and the Lord wanted to free me from it.
Perhaps He wants to free you too.
Is there something you are fearful of doing? Maybe you feel like you don’t have what it takes to follow through. God knows you do. Trust Him with it and He just might surprise you.
Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. – Joshua 1:9