The Joy of Glory

Discovering endless joy in the boundless glory of God…

Belly of This Fish

*During Lent various members of Shades Valley Community Church are writing reflection poems as we journey through the book of Jonah. The following  poem was written by Danny Delgado and inspired by Jonah 2:1-10.

At my lowest point you find me –
Though I’ve been brought to this low by my own accord.

As Paul says, who will save me from this death?
Because we all know I chose to lay my head in this desert.

For it has been your heart of grace that has angered me,
And it has been your heart of grace that has saved me.

See…there is no end to your love.
No ceiling and no floor.
How can I choose who deserves your grace?
No one has before.

But see…like a good father you met me here.
In the place I’m enslaved, full of fear.

See no one can out run your pursuit.
None can wish.
Whether it’s the heat of the fire,
Or the belly of the fish.

Yet still there you hear my cry and rescue.
Grace is a person.
It’s you.

Lent Devotional: Jonah 2

Jonah 2 (click here)
For you cast me into the deep, into the heart of the seas, and the flood surrounded me; all your waves and your billows passed over me.

…yet you brought up my life from the pit, O LORD my God. (Jonah 2:3 and 6b)

Reflection
The pagan sailors cast Jonah into the sea…but they don’t get credit for it! Jonah acknowledges God’s sovereignty in his situation…the Lord is the one who cast him into the sea…even the wind and waves belong to the Lord.

God is sovereign.

Even over our difficulties, dangers, and near death experiences. This truth makes us struggle. If God is sovereign, then why do we experience suffering at all? Why does he sometimes hurl us into the sea?

There are no easy answers to questions such as these, but there is good news, namely, that because God is sovereign over the wind and waves, we know that those forces never win! Because God is sovereign over death itself, we know that death doesn’t win!

We cannot always see his purposes, but we can trust that his purposes are good. Because the Lord was sovereign over casting Jonah into the sea, he could also sovereignly save him from the sea! God brought Jonah’s life up from the pit!

God saved Jonah from the sea and, even more importantly, from his sinful self! Jonah learned that salvation belongs to the Lord, but such a lesson can only be learned when one is in need of saving.

Jesus’ disciples learned this same thing upon a stormy sea. Jesus, like Jonah, was sleeping through the storm, but for a completely different reason. Jesus wasn’t sleeping because he was running from God, but because he was God. He had nothing to fear for he was in complete control… the disciples could only learn this truth amidst the storm.

To know Jesus as the sovereign Lord over the wind and waves, we must first be cast into the storm… only then and there can we experience his sovereign salvation.

*The complete SVCC Lenten reading guide is available here.

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