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Series: The Divine Pursuit - A Study of Jonah
Week 3: Surrender - Day 5
“WHEN MY LIFE WAS EBBING AWAY, I REMEMBERED YOU, LORD.” —JONAH 2:7
“So, tell me about your first date.” From the look on her face, you’d think I just asked her to recite the periodic table of elements from memory. “Uh...” she replied, “um...I don’t know. I’ll have to think about it.”
Melissa had come to counseling because she “wanted to figure out if she should leave her husband.” We were in our first session together, and it was already getting a little rough. Melissa recited a common litany of complaints against Jake, her husband: he didn’t help out around the house enough. He didn’t listen. He didn’t support her.
Melissa used to be happy, before kids and bills and life got a hold of her and Jake. Nine years later, and she’s wondering why Jake feels more like a stranger than a husband.
“I’m asking you about your first date because it’s important to remember.” I explained. “When life gets hard and the love between you gets stale, you need to have these memories to draw from. So, can you tell me, what you liked about Jake on that first date?”
Over the next hour, Melissa and I talked about that first date. She told me about Jake’s kindness, his character. She told me about how he called immediately after he left that first night, to ask for a second date. She smiled and laughed. She also cried. “What happened to us? We used to love being together. We were a team!” As Melissa went through the process of remembering, her heart began to open to Jake. She saw more clearly the foundation that their love was built upon, and even in the tears, something else began to grow: hope. After that session, Melissa didn’t say she wanted to figure out if she should leave her husband. Hope replaced despair, and she wanted something more: she wanted restoration.
I wonder, too, what kind of response we give if someone asks us about our relationship with God. Perhaps, like Melissa, you have a hard time remembering how your relationship with Him even got started. Or maybe you are good at telling about that first date, but have a more difficult time giving an answer to what your last year has been like with Him.
Jonah chapter two is a beautiful example of the importance of remembering. With just nine verses, Jonah recalls his relationship with God and this crucial moment in his response.
He uses his personal words as well as passages of scripture to craft his remembrance. Like the importance of a first date to the foundation of a marriage, Jonah captures a crucial moment in his relationship with God.
Our whole lesson today is devoted to remembering with God. Jonah’s prayer ...
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