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Your Test Becomes Your Testimony
Your Royal Position, For Such a Time like This
When God Reroutes Our Promise Land
He Reveals the Profound and Hidden
You Call Me Out Upon the Waters
Take My Yoke Upon You
Refuge for the Refugees
Holy Spirit Conviction
But Such As I Give To You!
The Extravagance of Partnering…
You Anoint My Head with Oil
They Have No Wine
Mountaineering with God
Positioning to see Jesus
Bridging the Gap
Be Born In Me
Purposed to Proclaim
Faith Forward
Mounting Up Like Wings on Eagles
Worship, a Weapon and Sceptre
God's Engineering
Lord If It's You
Our Steps Are Ordered
The Strength of My Heart
Rise and Be Healed
Decree a Thing and it Shall Be…
A Whale of a Time
Chariots of Fire All Around
Let My People Go
Fishers of Men, Harcest Time!
The Abounding Grace of God
Made Ready for the Archers Arm
Living Waters from A Well...
Mother Behold Your Son!
Just Say the Word
Planet Shakers, Planet Changers!
Who Are You Looking For?
Do This in Remembrance of Me
Gabbatha, The Judges Seat
Your Will, My Command
David Arise
Esther's Crowning Glory
Build on the Rock
Resurrection Life
Holistic Lifestyle
Reason for Every Season
Prepared for a Purpose
The Prized Pearl

A Whale of a Time
The word of the LORD came to Jonah the son of Amittai saying, "Arise, go to Nineveh the great city and cry against it, for their wickedness has come up before Me." (Jonah 1:2) Jonah was a prophet from Galilee and this scene was set between 780 and 760 B.C. Assyria was a powerful evil nation and Israel's most dreaded enemy. Nineveh was the capital of Assyria. The words 'arise' and 'go' signified urgency, and they provoked Jonah. God commanded Jonah to approach this powerful nation, an enemy of Israel to repent of its sin or face the consequences. But Jonah thought and felt differently. Surely this was not a word from God? Surely God could not possibly show mercy and benevolence to an enemy of Israel? Imagine an instruction like this for us today? Would we be receptive, would we question motives, allegiances, loyalties, religious boundaries, manmade mind-sets and preconceived limitations?
But Jonah rose up to flee to Tarshish. So he went down to Joppa, found a ship which was going to Tarshish, paid the fare and went down into it to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the LORD. Nineveh was located east of the Tigris River in modern day Iraq, 500 miles east of Jonah's hometown. Tarshish stood more than 2500 miles from Israel in the opposite direction of Nineveh, the most remote destination available to Jonah. Jonah was on the run and literally wanted to distance himself from this absurd call from God. How foolish of Jonah, how foolish of us to imagine that we can run away from God, from His presence and abandon His will and plan for our lives, however implausible and ludicrous they may be. Jonah boarded the ship to Tarshish but a great violent storm arose, threatening to break the ship and kill all on-board. The sailors cried out to their gods for help, jettisoned the cargo into the sea to lighten the vessel, while Jonah chose to go below deck to sleep. Even the threat of dying at sea appeared more appealing and honourable to Jonah than confronting Nineveh! Outraged by Jonah's behaviour the sailors hauled him out of bed and interrogated him. Jonah confessed that he was running away from God, and that they should throw him overboard as then only would the storm subside. The sailors were terrified, they tried relentlessly to row to safety, but failed, and as a last resort they asked for Gods pardon for throwing Jonah into the sea. Immediately the raging sea grew calm.

Salvation mercy and grace showed up in the form of a whale! Yes a whale had swallowed Jonah and there he remained for three days and three nights! Yes God will use the elements, the unusual even laughable means and methods to derail our disobedience to bring us back in line to where He needs us to be. It is in the whale's belly that Jonah cries out to God in all repentance and sincerity. Amongst the stench and discomfort of the bowels and intestines of a whale does Jonah reflect and find the Grace and Salvation of a faithful God! This is where Jonah fully surrendered to God. Jonah experienced his very own death and resurrection, the exchange of wills and on Gods instruction the whale vomited Jonah out. Once again God instructs Jonah to go to Nineveh and preach repentance. If God could spare him from a storm, house him in a 'safe-haven' and eject him from a whale then of course there was no telling what God could do through him in Nineveh! How incredibly merciful and gracious God is with us even in our rebellion, that however painfully He might have to deal with us and 'beat us back into shape', we are able to turn cowardice to courage, fear to fearlessness and disbelief into relentless radical faith. Small wonder Scripture says obedience is better than sacrifice!

Nineveh was so huge that it took Jonah three days to go through it. He warned of the City's pending downfall if they did not repent. So compelling and bold was he that all the Ninevites from the least to the great, donned sackcloth and proclaimed a fast to turn from their evil ways. Nineveh was saved from God's wrath, but Jonah was angry at Gods mercy towards an enemy and had great difficulty in reconciling Gods desire to grant salvation to a nation that he thought was undeserving. Thankfully God can use us in spite of ourselves, even when we do not fully embrace His ways and thoughts. We are in a time in History were God is calling on us to go into enemy territory with a bold courageous mantle. Many of us are afraid to talk about our faith, for fear of being unpopular, of standing out or being different, but an ounce of disobedience to the call could translate into a City, a nation, a generation never receiving or knowing the Salvation of a merciful, loving Father. Arise, Go as He tells you to and do great exploits even greater than you can imagine.

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