I’m studying the book of Jonah right now. One phrase keeps running through my head as I study. “He paid the price.”
“He paid the fare and went on board, joining those going to Tarshish—as far away from God as he could get.” Jonah 1:3 The Msg
Have you ever run from God? There is always a price to pay.
I find it interesting that some scholars believe Jonah actually chartered the whole boat and crew. Chartering a boat is expensive. Scholars speculate Jonah was not only trying to pick a destination as far away from Jerusalem, where the manifest presence of the Lord rested, as he could but also with a crew and boat that would get him away as soon as possible. Jonah wanted control and he paid the price.
Read that again. Jonah wanted control and he paid the price.
Ouch! This might, maybe a little bit sound like something I might maybe want in my own life too. Control.
I want to say where I’m going. I want to determine how fast I’ll get there.
And so I choose a destination, set goals along the way and fully expect a fruitful result from my efforts. But sometimes God has a different plan.
This is where my mind is today. Have you paid a high price to get what you want? My mind is flickering here and there wandering in and out of my own “ship chartering” experiences. Reading about Jonah makes me want to walk around my own life with a divine GPS system attached to my arm!
Oh wait! We already have one.
The wise counsel God gives when I'm awake
is confirmed by my sleeping heart.
Day and night I'll stick with God;
I've got a good thing going and I'm not letting go.
I'm happy from the inside out,
and from the outside in, I'm firmly formed.
You canceled my ticket to hell—
that's not my destination!
Now you've got my feet on the life path,
all radiant from the shining of your face.
Ever since you took my hand,
I'm on the right way.
Psalm 16:7-11 The Msg