“Go to the great city of Nineveh and preach against it, because its wickedness has come up before me.” (Jonah 1:2 NIV)
The brutality of the Assyrians would make your hair stand on end. Nineveh was a major Assyrian city. The prophet Nahum describes it as “the city of blood, full of lies, full of plunder, never without victims!” (Nah. 3:1). This was not a place you would want to visit.
The Word of God came to the prophet Jonah, who was highly esteemed in Israel. He was settled and secure in what he was doing for God. Then God said to him “Go to Nineveh!”
Suddenly, the music stops in Jonah’s life: “Lord, I am really happy in the work you’ve called me to do here in Gath Hepher.”
“I want you to go somewhere else.”
“You want me to leave the ministry I love? Where do you want me to go?”
“In Assyria? There are terrorists and torturers there. What do you want me to say?”
“Preach against the city, because its wickedness has come up before me.”
Put yourself in Jonah’s shoes: He has a good life, in a good place, doing good work. And now the Word of the Lord disturbs his comfortable life.
Our culture says, “Live your dreams,” but God has a way of disturbing our dreams. We plan our families, our futures, and our finances. Then God breaks into the plan: A child is born, a loved one dies, you lose your job, and suddenly your life is not going “according to plan.”
When God stepped into Jonah’s plan, his heart was revealed. Jonah’s self-centeredness was hidden under the surface of his successful ministry.
When was the last time God interrupted your plans?