Friends, I have to confess I’ve experienced a great deal of conviction over the last four weeks of our Jonah study. Reading his story has held up a mirror to the spoiled brat in my heart.
- I whine when things don’t go my way.
- I wonder why God won’t do what I want.
- I wish things were different.
- I spend way too much time sulking about my disappointments.
- I often have a skewed perspective, and I need a wake-up call.
God is ever so patient with His children, and He continued to reach out to His prodigal prophet to help him hold up a mirror to his selfish heart. God never gave up on Jonah.
God loves us so much He extends His grace to us over and over. He covers us with His compassion and invites us to find rest as we surrender and repent.
Like Jonah, God wants us to see He is more concerned with refining our character than with responding to our comfort.
God will show His mercy to us – not based on our merit – but because He is faithful to keep His promises. He is slow to anger and never responds to our adulterous hearts with anything but an affirmation of His steadfast love. He may allow us to experience discomfort, but always because He is drawing us back into the circle of His protection.
Before we say goodbye to Jonah, we need to take a hard look in the mirror of God’s Word and see where we lack God’s compassionate heart.
- Are we easily offended?
- Do we “quit” on others who are hard to love?
- Have we isolated ourselves from community because people have disappointed us?
- Did we stop showing up for hurting friends to just sit on the sidelines?
- Is our heart whining or worshiping today?
God wanted Jonah to have compassion on the Ninevites – because He loves the world. He loves every single person who is breathing and walking on earth right now.
Let’s not miss the message of Jonah. God doesn’t treat us as our sins deserve. Every morning, we receive His fresh mercies as the sun rises to greet us.
As people who have received God’s compassion, we are to champion His cause by showing up with a mop to clean up messes and carrying our casserole dishes into broken places. We are to move toward the loveless and make a difference.
Let’s resist the temptation to sit on the sidelines and sulk.
Ask God to give you a fresh perspective on how you can cover a difficult person with His compassion.
Today, we can start over. We can show up even when it’s not comfortable. We can serve in hard places. We can speak life over those who desperately need Him.
We are on a mission of compassion.
Keeping the faith,
Lyli Dunbar enjoys karaoke in the car with her husband, digging into Bible study with the girls, and reading 12 books at a time. A writer, speaker, and mentor, her burning passion is to know Jesus and to make Him known. Join her at lylidunbar.com to find fuel for a wildfire faith. You may also connect with Lyli on Facebook, Instagram,Twitter, You Tube and Pinterest.
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