Just to give you a bit of context here, were at the part in the story of Jonah where the people of Nineveh have repented, and thus God relented of the disaster He was going to upon them. Because of God’s mercy, Jonah is now mad, this is where we’re at now. — This is what God gave me today in His word:
And the LORD said, “Do you do well to be angry?” (Jonah 4:4)
Jonah went out of the city and sat to the east of the city and made a booth for himself there. He sat under it in the shade, till he should see what would become of the city. (Jonah 4:5)
Now the LORD God appointed a plant and made it come up over Jonah, that it might be a shade over his head, to save him from his discomfort. So Jonah was exceedingly glad because of the plant. (Jonah 4:6)
But when dawn came up the next day, God appointed a worm that attacked the plant, so that it withered. (Jonah 4:7)
When the sun rose, God appointed a scorching east wind, and the sun beat down on the head of Jonah so that he was faint. And he asked that he might die and said, “It is better for me to die than to live.” (Jonah 4:8)
But God said to Jonah, “Do you do well to be angry for the plant?” And he said, “Yes, I do well to be angry, angry enough to die.” (Jonah 4:9)
And the LORD said, “You pity the plant, for which you did not labor, nor did you make it grow, which came into being in a night and perished in a night. (Jonah 4:10)
And should not I pity Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know their right hand from their left, and also much cattle?” (Jonah 4:11)
From these verses, we can see two things:
- God will teach us lessons
- We shouldn’t feel secure with anything that we have
God Will Teach Us Lessons
And we may not always like them. In fact, if God has to “teach us a lesson,” we likely wont like it. In Jonah’s case, the lesson came in the form of a plant which withered, leaving Jonah is severe heat; to teach him that his anger for Nineveh was wrong. In our case, it may come in the form of a broken down car (to teach us to slow down in life, or many other things), or in the sudden loss of a job (to teach us to rely on God), or almost anything. Which is why, when “misfortune” seems to come to us, we shouldn’t worry.
We Shouldn’t Feel Secure in Anything we Have
In Jonah’s case, he just lost a plant. But this can apply to us as well, specifically when we look at debt. Debt is, in essence, the assumption that tomorrow we will continue to have the same job, etc. that we do now. Let’s say that Jonah had taken out a couple of hundred denarii (or whatever the currency they used was) in order to set up a stand selling water, and then the plant had died on him. He would then be stuck in debt, and without any way to pay it off… Now, this may seem a ludicrous example, but that, in essence, is what someone who goes into debt is doing: assuming that tomorrow he will still have the job/opportunity that he does today.
More than that though, we shouldn’t feel secure in anything we own. Houses can be destroyed by some natural fluke, jobs can be lost when a company goes under, and people do die when random shootings occur. What makes us so confident that none of those things will happen to us? Rather than being secure in our houses, cars, or even lives (i.e. plants which suddenly grow), we should be secure in Jesus; secure in our knowledge of Him. Yes, we should work hard at any job we have. Yes, we should not put ourselves in the middle of an area prone to hurricanes or shootings, if we have a choice in the matter. But we shouldn’t find solace in those things. As they will, one day, along with us, pass away.
The point being this, overall: we should trust in God, and not worry when any ‘bad’ thing comes on us.
You are Loved!