Jonah Dec12

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Jonah

Post by Ashley Jansen

In 2008 God called me to stay at home full-time with my son which meant quitting the job I loved at my church.  I remember crying to my husband saying, “I think God wants me to resign from my job.”  I loved working there.  I loved my boss.  Yet, out of obedience, I made plans to sit down with my boss and turn in my resignation.  The weekend before my meeting I was asked if I might be interested in interviewing for a Director position in a different area, a position that just so happened to be my ‘dream job.’  This must be what God was telling me – He didn’t want me to quit.  He had my dream job waiting for me and just wanted me to leave my current position (but in my gut I knew it wasn’t right).  I decided I’d interview and, to make a long-story short, I got the job.  It was wonderful, but it was also a struggle, and about a year later I realized why –  I had disobeyed.  I was supposed to be at home doing the dream job God had for me, not the dream job I had for me.  More tears and a different boss – I tweaked my resignation letter and turned it in.  It was almost as if God was saying “Will you trust me? Even if something better, according to you, comes along, will you trust me in what I’m asking you to do?”  I failed that test, but I learned a lot!

So…Jonah.  Here’s a quick synopsis: Jonah lives in a town called Gath-hepher.  God calls him to go to Ninevah to basically be a missionary.  He decides, “Nope, not gonna do it.  I’m gonna go down to Joppa where I can catch a boat to Tarshish instead.”  Look at the map below.

jonah_map

Jonah was going 2,000 (yes thousand) miles in the opposite direction.  He wasn’t just saying “No!”, he was saying, “Heck, No!”  So God sends a big storm and the boat starts to capsize.  Jonah realizes it’s due to his disobedience and asks them to throw him overboard.  As soon as they do the storm calms and “the LORD had arranged for a great fish to swallow Jonah.  And Jonah was inside the fish for three days and three nights” (Jonah 1:17). Jonah prays to God
and “the LORD ordered the fish to spit Jonah out onto the beach” (Jonah 2:10).  Jonah then goes to Nineveh and guides the people to turn from their wicked ways and trust God.

In my study of this story I came to a certain conclusion.  I’ve never (call me stupid) looked at this story as the whale being sent to SAVE Jonah. Just to SWALLOW him.  “The fish swallowed up Jonah, not to devour him, but to protect him.”  Isn’t that amazing?  When we disobey, God isn’t out to swallow us, he’s out to save us!  That’s a HUGE difference!  “God could have rescued Jonah in any number of ways.  He chose this specific way because of the effect it would have on Jonah’s heart.”  Ultimately “Jonah shows us that God has a way of bringing us to the place where we want what He wants.” (BlueLetterBible.com)

God didn’t swallow me when I disobeyed and took another job.  God still used me in that roll to connect 100s of people into life-changing small groups.  But He brought me to the place of wanting what He wanted more than what I wanted.

So I ask you – Is there an area in your life where God asked you to go to Nineveh, but you are experiencing the storms of going to Tarshish?

Would you choose to allow Him to save you, even if it means feeling like you are being swallowed?  The result in the turning from your Tarshish is true peace, because you will be smack dab in the middle of what He wants for you; His will.

Ashley Jansen serves on the Titus2 Mentoring Women Board and was a mentee in our founder’s first Titus2 group in 2006.  She is wife of 14 years to Mark and mom to three boys, Hamilton (9), Luke (5), and Garrett (2).  You can connect with her at ashleyjansen.com.

Jonah Dec12

.                         wordswag_1481556109025

Jonah

Post by Ashley Jansen

In 2008 God called me to stay at home full-time with my son which meant quitting the job I loved at my church.  I remember crying to my husband saying, “I think God wants me to resign from my job.”  I loved working there.  I loved my boss.  Yet, out of obedience, I made plans to sit down with my boss and turn in my resignation.  The weekend before my meeting I was asked if I might be interested in interviewing for a Director position in a different area, a position that just so happened to be my ‘dream job.’  This must be what God was telling me – He didn’t want me to quit.  He had my dream job waiting for me and just wanted me to leave my current position (but in my gut I knew it wasn’t right).  I decided I’d interview and, to make a long-story short, I got the job.  It was wonderful, but it was also a struggle, and about a year later I realized why –  I had disobeyed.  I was supposed to be at home doing the dream job God had for me, not the dream job I had for me.  More tears and a different boss – I tweaked my resignation letter and turned it in.  It was almost as if God was saying “Will you trust me? Even if something better, according to you, comes along, will you trust me in what I’m asking you to do?”  I failed that test, but I learned a lot!

So…Jonah.  Here’s a quick synopsis: Jonah lives in a town called Gath-hepher.  God calls him to go to Ninevah to basically be a missionary.  He decides, “Nope, not gonna do it.  I’m gonna go down to Joppa where I can catch a boat to Tarshish instead.”  Look at the map below.

jonah_map

Jonah was going 2,000 (yes thousand) miles in the opposite direction.  He wasn’t just saying “No!”, he was saying, “Heck, No!”  So God sends a big storm and the boat starts to capsize.  Jonah realizes it’s due to his disobedience and asks them to throw him overboard.  As soon as they do the storm calms and “the LORD had arranged for a great fish to swallow Jonah.  And Jonah was inside the fish for three days and three nights” (Jonah 1:17). Jonah prays to God
and “the LORD ordered the fish to spit Jonah out onto the beach” (Jonah 2:10).  Jonah then goes to Nineveh and guides the people to turn from their wicked ways and trust God.

In my study of this story I came to a certain conclusion.  I’ve never (call me stupid) looked at this story as the whale being sent to SAVE Jonah. Just to SWALLOW him.  “The fish swallowed up Jonah, not to devour him, but to protect him.”  Isn’t that amazing?  When we disobey, God isn’t out to swallow us, he’s out to save us!  That’s a HUGE difference!  “God could have rescued Jonah in any number of ways.  He chose this specific way because of the effect it would have on Jonah’s heart.”  Ultimately “Jonah shows us that God has a way of bringing us to the place where we want what He wants.” (BlueLetterBible.com)

God didn’t swallow me when I disobeyed and took another job.  God still used me in that roll to connect 100s of people into life-changing small groups.  But He brought me to the place of wanting what He wanted more than what I wanted.

So I ask you – Is there an area in your life where God asked you to go to Nineveh, but you are experiencing the storms of going to Tarshish?

Would you choose to allow Him to save you, even if it means feeling like you are being swallowed?  The result in the turning from your Tarshish is true peace, because you will be smack dab in the middle of what He wants for you; His will.

Ashley Jansen serves on the Titus2 Mentoring Women Board and was a mentee in our founder’s first Titus2 group in 2006.  She is wife of 14 years to Mark and mom to three boys, Hamilton (9), Luke (5), and Garrett (2).  You can connect with her at ashleyjansen.com.

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