“Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, “Go to Nineveh, that great city, and proclaim judgment against it, for their wickedness has come up before Me.” But Jonah ran away to Tarshish to escape from the presence of the Lord and his duty as His prophet.
Jonah 1:1-3 AMP
It was a little before 8:00am on a Friday in Provincetown Cape Cod, MA. Veteran lobster diver Michael Packard entered the water for his second dive of the day. His vessel, the “Ja’n J,” was off Herring Cove Beach and surrounded by a fleet of boats catching striped bass. The water temperature was a balmy 60 degrees and the visibility about 20 feet. As Packard, 56, dove down that fateful Friday morning, he saw schools of sand lances and stripers swimming by. Then it happened, Packard suddenly knew what it truly felt like to be part of that food chain. In something truly biblical, Packard was swallowed whole by a humpback whale. “All of a sudden, I felt this huge shove and the next thing I knew it was completely black.” “I could sense I was moving, however I could feel the whale squeezing me with the muscles in his mouth as the whale swallowed me whole.”
Jonah was a prophet. God called Jonah to the great city of Nineveh to proclaim judgement against it. However, Jonah despised the people of Nineveh with a deep hatred because of the terror they did to his people, so he boarded a boat to run away from God—nearly 2500 miles in the opposite direction…or so he thought! Jonah was a ‘Dead Leader Running.’ Through a series of events on the run, God sent a “Great Fish” to swallow Jonah. For three days, God in His Sovereign power directed the Great Fish back to the very shores of Nineveh, where Jonah was vomited up right in the very place God had called Jonah to go (Nineveh). The lesson? You will never out run the Sovereign hand of God.
So how about you. What are you running from? Is there something God has asked you to do? Is there someone God has instructed you to go and share His salvation message too? Is there a place God has asked you to go and you’re running in the opposite direction? Like Jonah, are you a ‘Dead Leader Running?’ Only you and God know. Allow me to encourage you today. Please listen closely. The storm in your life is not to “pay you back—but to bring you back.” God loves you. He is not angry with you. You can never out run the Sovereign hand of the Living God—because His eye is ever upon you. Make the choice today to stop running and start obeying. Surrender your will, to His. Life will only make sense when you’re living a life of surrender and obedience to the Lord. Don’t believe me? Just ask Jonah!
Love God! Love People! Live Sent!
Be Worth Being,
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Kevin Burrell has worked in professional baseball as both a player and MLB scout for the past 40 years, and currently serves as an area scouting supervisor. Kevin was drafted in the 1st round of the 1981 free agent amateur draft (25th selection overall), and played ten years of professional baseball with four different organizations. He and his wife, Valerie, live in Sharpsburg, Ga.
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