by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions
Jonah 1:2-3 "Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry out against it; for their wickedness has come up before Me." But Jonah arose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the LORD. He went down to Joppa, and found a ship going to Tarshish; so he paid the fare, and went down into it, to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the LORD.
Romans 11:29 …for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.
Jonah the prophet ran from what he considered a difficult and abhorrent assignment from God, thinking he could escape to a place where he couldn't be found. He refused to obey the Lord and he boarded a ship headed in the opposite direction. But YHVH's irrevocable gifts and callings were faithfully resting upon His servant Jonah, and He provided the drama needed to bring his man around. He sent a great storm which rocked Jonah's boat and then a large fish which ate him! These persuasions changed Jonah's attitude.
Sometimes the Lord needs to put us in a difficult position so that we can be restored to Him and remain faithful to our calling. In Jonah's case, the belly of a great fish prompted him to look up again to His Creator and begin renewing the broken communication. The reluctant prophet learned finally that he couldn't run from his destiny or his calling, and that YHVH's faithfulness could necessarily involve him in work that was not to his own liking.
Has God gifted and called you to something difficult and even onerous to you? If so, remember Jonah. He was the Lord's prophet even when he didn't want to be. You might as well rejoice in your calling even if your flesh is screaming "Nooooo!!!" You will be glad to have avoided God's "gentle reminder" of who you are and you will save Him a lot of trouble going after you.