Jonah 4:6 (AMP)
And the Lord God prepared a gourd and made it to come up over Jonah, that it might be a shade over his head, to deliver him from his evil situation. So Jonah was exceedingly glad [to have the protection] of the gourd.
A gourd rises from the ground and it provides the perfect shade for Jonah to rest. He wants Jonah to relax and be delivered from this anger he’s holding onto; Jonah was very content. God gives Jonah a little break from all emotional disturbances he’s been through.
Again, we see Jonah being very selfish and having an “all about me” attitude. God shows His mercy towards him and is not moved by how Jonah is feeling towards the Ninevites.
I thank the Lord that we don’t have God’s power of destruction. If we did, we would be in more trouble than ever. If it was up to Jonah, he would have extinguished the Ninevites instantly. No chance, just make them disappear from earth; never to return.
Our Lord is all about chances and giving us the opportunity to make our decision. Then we receive our compensation from the decisions we make; whether good or bad.
God took the Israelites out of Egypt and tried to show them the proper way of life. But they were constantly focused on the wrong things. They were babes who were brainwashed by the Egyptian’s way of life. They needed to learn and grow in their culture. Instead of being focused on the teachings, they would look to the sides to see what their neighbors were up to; eventually falling into other nations beliefs. They disobeyed and God had enough of it. So, He used the Assyrians to remove them from their place of their destiny. From the first King, Saul, that was appointed to the Israelites to the captivity of the Northern and Southern kingdoms, it was a struggle to get God’s people in line for their mission.
Luke 11:34 (AMP)
Your eye is the lamp of your body; when your eye (your conscience) is sound and fulfilling its office, your whole body is full of light; but when it is not sound and is not fulfilling its office, your body is full of darkness.
We do it to ourselves; we have this struggle with God when He tries to align us right. Let’s stop struggling and get on track with God’s mission in life.
By morning daybreak, the gourd is cut down by a worm who is eating away at it. The sun starts to rise and God prepares an east wind to beat down on Jonah’s head. Jonah starts to feel faint and thought to himself that he is better off dying than to live through it.
We see Jonah again not doing a good job in handling the struggles in life. He’s fine when everything is going his way, but once there’s a little discomfort, tribulation, a little faith testing; he crumbles. He thinks that the best thing for him is to die so he doesn’t have to go through the pains in life.
Jonah 4:9 (AMP)
And God said to Jonah, Do you do well to be angry for the loss of the gourd? And he said, I do well to be angry, angry enough to die!
The discomforts in life brings us to the next level. This is where
The growing and faith process cannot increase in us if we don’t go through the discomforts of life; it’s impossible. As humans, we learn by making mistakes, getting back up, and trying again. Not by trying to do the same things previously, but by trying it a different way until we perfect it.
2 Timothy 4:5 (AMP)
As for you, be calm and cool and steady, accept and suffer unflinchingly every hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fully perform all the duties of your ministry.
In Matthew 16:21-23, we read a discussion with Jesus and Peter. Jesus tells his disciples of the upcoming events that will take place and the unpreventable death that will occur. Peter takes him to the side and speaks to him sharply in regards to the words Jesus had just finished speaking. Peter was not accepting what Jesus had just stated. Jesus immediately rebukes Peter; “Get behind me, Satan!”
Did Jesus understand the results of discomforts in the process? He knew it firsthand how impactful it is and what pain brings to your life when applied appropriately. Jesus opened the door of communication as our mediator between us and God. Without this, we are doomed.
We, too, are mediators between Jesus and those who are lost in the world. But what are we doing to be part of that process?
Jonah has pity for the little things in life but is not concerned for the bigger things in life. The book of Jonah closes with God speaking to him in regards to a comparison of the gourd and the Ninevites.
We just can’t be concerned with the things in life around our four walls. There is a town, a city, a world out there that needs our help during these perilous times. What are we doing to make a contribution to our community? How are we helping others who need to hear the Gospel and all the wonderful things Jesus has in store for us. We need to be concerned like God was for the 120,000 people in Nineveh who didn’t know God and needed to know who He was. We have to step out of the complacency of life and walk with the Lord in this thing called our DESTINY.