When did you stop running from God? Many of us who believe we are good Christians may proudly claim that we never even ran away from God at all. We consider ourselves as good Christian church people. This, of course, includes those in a modern Christian church in Dubai.
There is no better feeling than knowing we have surrendered to God’s will in our lives. Or is there? While it’s great that we have that going for us, there is a certain question we need to ask: have we also surrendered to God’s purposes in the world?
The Journey to Nineveh
Jonah, like many Christians, believed he knew right from wrong. He respected God and knew what He was capable of. Having learned his lesson when he was swallowed and eventually spit out by a fish, Jonah obeyed when God commended him the second time to go to Nineveh.
After a long journey, Jonah went into Nineveh and walked through the city for three days, telling them to repent, for in forty days the city will be overthrown by invaders. Surprisingly, the Ninevites believed God’s word. The reason this was so surprising was because Jonah was a foreigner, and the Ninevites did not even recognize this outsider’s God. Yet everyone in the city, even the king of Nineveh, covered themselves in sackcloths as a sign of mourning for having done something wrong. For this, God showed compassion to the Ninevites.
Getting angry with God
To Jonah, the compassion shown by God seemed unjust, as the wicked people of Nineveh were unworthy. It seemed very wrong that Jonah’s enemies, whom he preached and warned about a calamity, was suddenly under God’s compassionate wing. He didn’t even want to go on this journey in the first place, and he believed that the Ninevites deserved to be punished.
Jonah was surrendered to God’s moral will, by doing all the right things, knowing the law of Moses, doing everything he could do as someone who was serving God. However, Jonah showed that he has not surrendered to God’s global purpose by not wanting to see a compassionate God to his enemies.
Sadly, many of us are guilty of this.
How Christians become judgemental
We’d think that, given our teachings, that we would be among the most compassionate people in the world. Unfortunately, this is not how many people see Christians: truth of the matter is we are often seen as some of the most judgemental people on earth.
We are taught to do the right thing. We constantly practice doing the right thing. The problem lies in entitlement: when we do the right thing long enough, we start thinking we’re better than those who DON’T do the right thing.
It seems only logical, doesn’t it? We do the right thing and we glorify God even though it’s not always easy. Because it’s not always easy, we start thinking that we deserve to be loved by God just a little bit more than those who don’t even believe him.
Ask yourself this: am I so self-righteous that I am against a certain group of people finding God? And as God asked Jonah, is it right for you to be angry about God showing compassion to other people?
It is not enough to simply surrender to God’s moral will. It is extremely important that we surrender to God’s global purposes, meaning we need to show compassion to those who need it the most. None of us are innocent. What we are, is forgiven.