The other day, I babysat for a family in my hometown. They have an adorable 2 1/2-year-old and a very smart 6-year-old (who are both way cooler than me). The only game that the 6-year-old wanted to play was tag. Once we finally sat down for a popsicle, I asked her why she loves being chased: “Well,” she said, “it’s awesome and silly knowing someone is always chasing after me. That’s what makes it so fun!” That little idea got me thinking.
The God of the universe looks at us with so much love — He never stops chasing after us. His love is radical and beautiful. And sometimes that’s really tough for us to understand. It honestly doesn’t make any sense. It’s backwards if you think about it — we give Jesus every single reason to stop chasing after us, but He never stops.
God called Jonah to go and be a servant for His kingdom in Nineveh. The people in Nineveh were deep in sin and they needed someone to share the love of the Lord with them. Jonah completely disobeyed and ran the opposite direction to jump on a boat that would take him across the sea. The Lord then sent a great wind and storm on the sea, and a violent storm arose that threatened to break up the boat. The story goes on to tell us that Jonah ended up off the boat and into the raging sea and instead of dying, he ended up in the belly of a giant fish (because God was going to use Jonah in a big way). God uses the fish to bring Jonah back to dry land in order to fulfill God’s purpose for him. Jonah’s rebellion could not overturn the sovereign grace of God; the Lord used Jonah to accomplish His saving purposes in spite of Jonah’s efforts to do otherwise.
The story of Jonah is a perfect example of the truth that our God is a sovereign creator. We are shown that God’s will and plan are perfect and He is ultimately over all.
I imagine that every time we try to run from God, He patiently asks, “Daughter, stop running. You are chosen. You are loved. And you have been created for a specific purpose for me and the Kingdom. Stop running!”
The God of the universe chases after us fervently, even when we are running in the other direction. We need to be running after Him, and sometimes we forget that. When we resist the responsibility to Him, whether out of fear, worry, or pride, we fall into the same trap that Jonah did. Maybe it won’t be a giant fish for us, but we can fall into life-changing calamity nonetheless. But when we are faithful to obey the Lord in this way and not run away from His radical plan for our lives, we experience the wonderful blessing of being used by Him to further His kingdom.
We serve the most incredible God — a beautiful, powerful, mighty, compassionate, forgiving, empowering God. And He desires relationship with us. We are never far from Him. How comforting is that?
-Zoe Campbell // @hello_its_zo