Anger infused his heart, the request too great to even respond. The ship pulled into the docks as he shook the dust from his shoes.
“That’s what I think about your idea.”
His running left him exhausted and he searched for a quiet place to sleep.
The lulling of the ship silenced his mind as they pulled farther away from Nineveh.
“How can you sleep? Get up and pray to your God so we will not die!”
Jonah opened his eyes to the captain standing over him. The tossing of the ship mimicked the tossing in his soul. He knew why the ocean’s fury came upon them. Even the lots cast told what his heart realized.
“I worship the Lord, the God of heaven who made land and sea. Throw me into the sea and it will calm down.” *
“Are you crazy? If we throw you into the water you will die. Men, continue rowing.”
The waves grew stronger, the winds harder, a new decision made.
“O Lord, we pray, don’t punish us with death for taking this man’s life! You, O Lord, are responsible for all this; it is your doing.” *
Jonah entered the waters below and the ocean grew calm. If only the fight in his heart would be still like the sea. Weeds wrapped his head. He sank to the root of the mountains. Ready for death as water encompassed him, God sent a Savior.
“When I felt my life slipping away, then O Lord, I prayed to you, and in your holy Temple you heard me. Those who worship worthless idols have abandoned their loyalty to you. But I will sing praises to you; I will offer you a sacrifice and do what I have promised. Salvation comes from the Lord!” *
Back on the beach, sand in his shoes, God’s word in his heart, Jonah headed toward Nineveh.
*Scripture taken from the Good News Bible, Today’s English Version. Nelson Publishers © 1976.
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