As soon as church was over on Wednesday night, my sweet husband stole me away for a couple of days to celebrate our anniversary. In the hurry of trying to pack and get on the road I forgot my Bible! I have a Bible on my phone but it's not the same of thumbing through the pages and underlining the words and phrases that God uses to speak to my heart.
I must admit I sat down grudgingly and opened my Bible app as I knew I would not get much out of my study by just reading it on my phone. So glad that God's Word is alive and speaks to us whether it is in the worn Bible we always use or simply the app on our phone.
As I started to read in Jonah 3, I stopped on verse two and read it several times as I meditated it on. "Preach unto it the preaching that I bid you". The Ninevites were the enemy of Israel and I am sure that Jonah thought of many things he wanted to tell the Ninevites that God had commanded in the book of the law, but what Jonah thought the Ninevites should hear was not what God knew they needed to hear. Because of what Jonah had seen the people of Ninevah do, Jonah knew what he wanted to say to them and he knew he wanted to see them overthrown and destroyed for their actions. Thankfully, God with His unconditional love knew what the people needed to hear and wanted their hearts more than he wanted their destruction and was ready to give mercy and grace to the Ninevites when they repented.
This made me think of myself as I lead and teach the women and children of our church. How easy is it for me to look and see the actions of these ones that God has entrusted to me, to give His Word to, and how I too often will choose His Words that I feel address the issues I see. The thing is, I am not God and am only seeing the outside when God truly sees the inside. He see the issues that each child and each woman have on the inside that is actually producing the actions that I see. Am I letting God lead me as I write my devotions and Bible studies to touch the hearts that He and He alone knows, or am I using the Words of God that I know and that I think will touch their hearts? I want to be lead by the spirit, I want to teach by God's spirit, I want to see true changes in these kids and sweet ladies, but these changes will only come when I teach exactly what God is telling me to teach, even when it's not what I feel they need to hear.
Preach unto it the preaching that I bid you
Thank You God for being merciful, slow to anger and always willing to forgive us when we repent and turn from our sins. Your love amazes me over and over again!