What a great time we had studying Jonah on Sunday. Pastor Mark led us through a look at the life of Jonah and what it says about obedience. Did you pick up on the relationship between obedience and knowing the presence of the Lord? After God gave him the command to go and preach to Nineveh, Jonah 1:3 says,
But Jonah rose 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 on board, to go with them to Tarshish, away from the presence of the Lord.
Jonah was not only fleeing God’s will but His very presence as well. And he knew it. Look at what it says in verse 10,
Then the men were exceedingly afraid and said to him, “What is this that you have done!” For the men knew that he was fleeing from the presence of the Lord, because he had told them.
Jonah knew what he was doing. In disobeying God he was giving up intimate fellowship with Him. But do we realize that? Do we really consider the consequences of saying “No” to God or failing to say “Yes” when He calls? Many Christians wonder why they don’t have a closer walk with the Lord. Many don’t even believe one exists. There are many reasons why this could be so, but I wonder if one of the biggest is disobedience. How many Christians sit and wonder why they don’t know God more, why they don’t hear His voice or sense His awesome presence, yet harbor an area of incomplete obedience or full out disobedience?
Well, I can’t say much more. Now you have to seek Him. If you’re one of those (Hey, I’ve been there for sure) who wonder if there is more, or wonder what happened to the close relationship you once had with the Lord, ask for His guidance. Ask Him, as David did (Psalm 139), to search you and know your heart. To try you and know your thoughts. To see if there is any offensive way in you and lead you in the way everlasting. Oh, He already knows. The progress comes when He reveals it to you and you turn to Him. He’s waiting for you.
Praise God, He waits for us.