Thursday, July 7, 2022
Change Starts Here
“The people of Nineveh believed God’s message, and from the greatest to the least, they declared a fast and put on burlap to show their sorrow” (Jonah 3:5 NLT).
When we think of the story of Jonah, we tend to focus on the whale. But the book of Jonah is not about a whale, or a “great fish,” as the Bible refers to it. There are only two verses that deal with the creature that swallowed the prophet. The rest of the book is the story of a massive revival that came about through the efforts of one man.
God called Jonah to preach to Nineveh, the capital of Assyria and a city of around 300,000 people.
Jonah, however, didn’t want to go preach to the Ninevites. So God sent a great wind, which caused a great storm, and then a great fish ultimately swallowed Jonah. But the ultimate story of Jonah is about a great God who showed great love to a lost city like Nineveh and offered them His forgiveness.
If we miss that, then we’ve missed the whole point of the story.
God turned around 300,000 people through the preaching of one man. But it takes a changed person to change other people, and the change started with Jonah himself. In the belly of that great fish, Jonah had a personal revival. He repented of his sin and recommitted himself to the Lord, willing to do what the Lord had called him to do.
Then the whale opened his mouth and vomited Jonah onto the beach. I wonder what Jonah looked like. He probably smelled worse than anyone the Ninevites had smelled before.
Yet Jonah delivered God’s message: “Forty days from now Nineveh will be destroyed!” (Jonah 3:4 NLT). Jonah was the right man at the right place at the right time.
In the same way, we want to be the “Jonahs” in our neighborhood, in our families, and in our spheres of influence. How will you allow God to use you today?
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