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TODAY’S MEDITATION – You cannot bargain with God (Jonah 2:9)

The story of Jonah is the demonstration of God’s power at work when we, His children, decide to disobey Him instead of doing what He is asking us to do. My brother, my sister, today, bear in mind that no matter what you do, you decide, you think, your desires will never take precedence over the will of God. We are ready to take steps that sometimes lead us to our own death (spiritually or physically), but less inclined to trust God’s guidance, advice or missions. Looking into this part of the story of Jonah, it is clear that Jonah was not in a position to bargain with God… and he understood it the hard way, only after God has allowed a fish to swallow him. In what (spiritual or physical) fish has your disobedience to God lead you so far? If you, like Jonah, can realise that there is absolutely no way you can bargain with God, then you will also be able to start thanking Him for what he has done for you.

My friend, it is while still within the fish that Jonah started thanking God for saving his life. Was he already saved? Not really, because he was not sure if he would survive or get out of the fish’s womb… yet, he thanked God: “But I, with a song of thanksgiving, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. Salvation comes from the Lord” (Jonah 2:9). Indeed, our troubles should bring us to cling tightly to God, not attempt to bargain our way out of the pain or sufferings. Jesus did not ask to get off the cross: He bore the pain and sufferings until the end, for us to enjoy the forgiveness of our sins and be redeemed! Yes, Jonah was a prophet and normally he was obligated to obey God’s words, but he tried to escape his responsibilities… How many of us do the same? However, after he realised he could have died, has God not been with him in the position he was now, and despite his disobedience, he pledged to fulfill his vows. Yes, how many wait until the feel they are really in a bad position to decide to follow God’s Word? You know, it would have been a great tragedy if God had allowed Jonah to keep running… What great hope for us then, to know that the Lord never abandons us!

This story should also remind us this truth: the real miracle that can happen to a believer’s life is not a supernatural healing, it’s not a supernatural breakthrough, it’s not a supernatural answer to a prayer… it is to “keep His commandments and do what pleases Him” (1 John 3:22), in addition this is what also opens the gates of heaven over our heads to “receive from Him anything we ask” (1 John 3:22). Stay blessed in Jesus’ name.