I’m a Shark Week geek. No seriously….
I can tell you more about sharks than I can about math, geography, history and science combined.
Each year, I mark on my calendar the week when Discovery Channel features documentaries on the top predators in the ocean. These man-eaters scare me and intrigue me at the same time. Oddly, I’m an avid scuba diver despite the fact that the thought of being chewed up and swallowed makes me break out into a sweat.
Sisters, if I found myself face to face with a giant fish like that… I’d be crying out to God for divine deliverance like never before.
I’d be begging for a second chance.
It’s that second chance part of Jonah’s story which completely enthralls me.
Jonah was a prophet, and so he was obligated to do what God asked of him. But instead of fulfilling his task, Jonah ran from his responsibilities. He was afraid of what God was asking. Jonah didn’t trust His provision. And through an interesting turn of events, found himself tossed into the ocean facing a great (aka giant)… fish.
And the great fish gulped up that disobedient prophet, ending his ability to run away from God.
Jonah had to hang up his sneakers.
As he sat in the fish’s belly for three days and three nights, do you know what he did? He prayed.
- His prayer wasn’t birthed out of anger.
- It wasn’t a prayer offering to make a deal.
- He didn’t even ask for deliverance.
Nope. Jonah prayed a prayer of thanksgiving. (You can read his prayer in the 2nd chapter of the book of Jonah)
He simply thanked God for sparing his life. He worshiped from the belly of the fish. He vowed to stop running away from what God wanted him to do.
Jonah saw God’s goodness, trusted Him in his calling, and decided to obey.
The prophet wanted a second chance.
Sisters, I wonder. Having you been running from God?
- Are you scared of what He is asking?
- Do you feel ill-equipped?
- Is it inconvenient?
- Does it look too daunting?
- Are you afraid of failing?
Maybe it’s time to stop running. Maybe it’s time to trust. Maybe it’s time for that second chance.
I’ve come to understand that God’s will… will be done. And friends, we can trust Him because we are assured in Jeremiah 29:11 that His plans are only to prosper us and not harm us.
God will give us what we need… to do what He wants. So when God asks something of us, we can obey with confidence.
Well once Jonah resolved to obey, God commanded the fish to spit him onto land. Just imagine how thankful Jonah was to serve a God that heard his prayers, spared his life and gave him a second chance.
Guess what, sisters. We serve the same God.
Do you need a second chance?
“Father, I say “yes” to whatever you want me to do for you. No more running. No more ignoring your call. No more excuses. God, I am here. I am available. I trust you. I want my second chance. Use me, Lord… I’m ready!”