Jonah: Better Dead Than Obedient

Douglas VanBronkhorst

Read: Jonah 1:4-7; Proverbs 9:9-10

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom. (Prov. 9:10)

I shouldn’t have told those sailors about God and Nineveh, but I had to talk about it with somebody. They’re just pagans. What do they care? Now I need to forget about it, and get through this long voyage. I need some sleep . . .

I knew I should’ve kept my mouth shut. This is a monster storm, the ship is sinking, and these superstitious seamen are blaming me! Yes, I get it. You’ve done all you can to keep the ship afloat, but if the wind doesn’t stop soon we’re all going into the sea. How is this my fault? The dice said so? Really? Actually, that could be true. I am disobeying my God, for a good reason! And, he’s the one who made and controls the sea, and the dry land, too.

Of course, I see it’s getting worse! If you want to live, throw me into the sea. What are you doing? You can’t row this thing to shore in these waves! Anyway, what if we made it? I told you, I’d rather die than go to Nineveh. If we can’t keep sailing west, throw me in, now! This storm isn’t about you. Thank you for your efforts, but save yourselves before you all go down with me. —Doug Van Bronkhorst

Prayer: Lord, keep me from being so caught up in my idea of what’s right that I can’t consider your will much less follow it. May I never substitute blind commitment to my goals for unquestioning obedience to yours. Amen.