June 29, 2023
- By Ed Powell
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"When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he had compassion and did not bring upon them the destruction he had threatened." Jonah 3:10
The principles of truth revealed in God's dealing with Jonah should speak loud and clear to us, and reflect in the evaluation of our walk with the Lord. Jonah's response to the subtlety of Satan to divert his attention away from God and to be concerned with his own self-centeredness, robbed him of a great blessing and exceeding great joy. Even after God showed mercy unto these people, Jonah had a divided heart. He reluctantly obeyed and was exceedingly displeased and angry that God was so merciful. You might say, "How could Jonah have such a terrible attitude when God had used him so miraculously?" He was the result of Satan's insidious ways to disrupt, discourage, and defeat his response to God. God will perfect His purpose in spite of us. We are the losers when we take an attitude such as Jonah did. Look at some of the other principles before us.
There is no better place than in God's will, regardless of circumstances. He will provide and equip us for service and enable us in all things. Never doubt in the dark what God has given you in the light. It is never right to turn from God's summons to do His Will or to follow His leading. Yielding to sin is always a downward journey; we go down from high and holy fellowship with God, down from dedicated service and self-restraint, and down from an intimate relationship with the Lord. Jonah's insensitivity to the storm shows the true effect of sin. It hardens the heart, stupefies the conscious, and causes us to be indifferent and unconcerned to all that relates to our spiritual life. The probing hand of God must root out all the sin, and remove it altogether. Only then will our lives be lived under His blessing and be effective and fruitful for His glory.
Spiritual reality is opening up the whole of our life to the Holy Spirit. He will meet us at the point of our need with the adequacy of Christ. God never coerces us, or imposes His Will upon us. We must choose by our own free will to make Him the authority and sovereign of our lives. It is not what we do, but "what we believe." It is not who we are, but "who He is." Let the words of this poem by an unknown author speak to your heart. We need to be utterly abandoned and captive to the bonds of His love. We will then be free from sin's entanglements, free from doubt and fear, Free from every worry, burden, grief, and care. It is then we find rest, and a peace that passes understanding. As we wait in His presence, He becomes our "all in all." When in full surrender, we abandon our heart and will to Him.
Oh the joy only He can give! Find yourself at the foot of the cross and let God cleanse and renew, reconcile and restore, fill and overflow your heart in a glorious, intimate relationship with our blessed Savior Jesus Christ. "You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand." May this be the desire of your heart!
© 2007 by Ed Powell. Used by permission.
This page was reprinted by permission from: http://litmin.org/dare.php=1&row=&date=2023-06-29
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