Friday, July 28, 2023

Fighting Against God


It happened on a radio talk show years ago. A man who had spent several years in prison and then later remade his life going on to become a successful lawyer was explaining how such a transformation came about. At the end of the conversation, the interviewer asked, “If you could go back in the past and change something, what would it be?” There was a brief silence and the convict turned lawyer quietly responded, “Nothing.” The talk show host was taken by surprise and weakly repeated, “Nothing?” His guest went on to explain. “I had to go to prison to learn what I needed to learn. When I was young, I was so hellbent on living my life the way I wanted that nobody or nothing was going to keep me from doing just that. I had to learn the hard way.” 

Many years before a man by the name of Jonah had similar thoughts. God had told him to do one thing and Jonah was bound and determined to do the exact opposite. He knew better. He knew what he was doing was not wise, but he went ahead and did what he wanted. Jonah didn’t go to prison; he just spent a few days in the belly of a fish. But the lesson was the same as that of the man being interviewed, a human being can’t fight against God and win. 

The book of Jonah isn’t just for runaway prophets or convicted felons – it’s for each one of us. There isn’t a human being alive who hasn’t experienced the conflict of knowing what God wants us to do and then defiantly turning our back on that clear command. And many of us have also recognized the futility of fighting against God. Somehow, someway, he gets us where he wants us to go. Unfortunately, the process is so often much more painful than it needs to be. 

For some, the book of Jonah is the ultimate fish story. For those who can dig deeper and honestly look at themselves and their lives in relation to God, there are a whole lot of lessons to learn from this defiant man who still wanted to serve God. If you find, too often, that you are putting on the gloves and wanting to duke it out with God when it comes to his guiding and directing your life, join us this Sunday! 

Sunday Worship Time: 10:00 am

Hawaii Lutheran Church (WELS)

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Honolulu, HI
Community Lutheran Church holds protestant chapel services in Honolulu, Hawaii near Pearl Harbor, HI. We are next to the USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbor Naval Base, Hickam Air Force Base, and Fort Shafter Hawaii. Look for us directly behind the Salt Lake, Hawaii, Target.