one of my favorite temper tantrums of bible is found in Jonah 4 – perhaps since I can carefully relate to it.

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In this final chapter that Jonah, we discover him ago in the city of Ninevah. After ~ spending three days in the ship of a fish, the goes to proclaim words of God come a city that violent, cruel idol worshippers. Even after expressing gratitude because that the mr in conserving him, he is still sulking, discontent, and also uncomfortable. The fears the the Lord will certainly forgive Ninevah, i m sorry we uncover interesting – this doesn’t seem to be the reaction ofa repentant prophet rejoicingat God’s mercy. However Jonah’s guilty of unbelief, fear, selfishness, and anger blind him in his uncomfortable state.

Exhausted and also frustrated, Jonah pleads through the Lord, “Now, O LORD, please take mine life indigenous me, because that it is better for me to die than to live” (v. 3). I chuckle every time once I review God’s solution to his cry: “Have you any type of right to be angry?” (v. 4, NIV).

In his rich and also loving mercy, the Lord detailed a vine that thrived up and over Jonah, offering shade “to save him from his discomfort” (v. 6). Jonah to be pleased and comfortable, but only momentarily. At dawn the following day, “God appointed a worm that struck the plant, so that it withered” (v. 7). V no much more comfortable cooling shade, the scorching wind and sun beat under on Jonah, making that faint.

Again, Jonah cries out to God in his discomfort, “It is better for me to dice than live” (v. 8). And again, God questions Jonah about whether he has a appropriate to be angry.

Four points to Remember as soon as You’re Uncomfortable

Oh, how similar we are to Jonah, aren’t we? we haven’t faced Jonah’s particular trials, however we still relate come his emotional strife, impatience, and also discomfort. In the seasons where strife and suffering have been lifted, we don’t feel the should be challenged, to rely on the Father, or to give thanks to him for the blessing he’s imparted into our lives. Yet, in our discomfort, we rotate away indigenous him,question his sovereignty, and reap unbelief.

We must find out from Jonah: The lord takes away comfort to open our eye to his sovereignty.

1. Comfort is momentary and also can be unhelpful.

The Lord provided this cooling shade for Jonah come soothe his discomfort, but it to be short-lived. Together we view in verse 6, Jonah “was exceedingly glad.” This is the only occurrence in Jonah’s story whereby we read the words “exceedingly glad,” and this is for great reason: He was comfortable.

Jonah was ready for a break, because that relief – and also on a deeper level, to prove come God that he to be right around the Ninevites. Ns imagine him breath a sigh the relief, closeup of the door his eyes, kicking up his feet, and enjoying a “much-needed, much-deserved” break from the scorching heat and wind. Jonah’s comfort resulted in happiness, yet it also presumably shifted his emphasis away indigenous understanding and also accepting the Lord’s provision for his life.

Additionally, it might be the Jonah didn’t even recognize the vine’s shade as a gift. His comfort to be a factor to take a break from relying ~ above the Lord. Yet the mr puts Jonah in his ar when that says, “You have actually been concerned about this vine, though you did not tend it or make it grow” (v. 10).

2. The lord is patient once you are not.

Twice (vv. 4, 9), the mr asks Jonah: “Do friend have any right to it is in angry?” This inquiry isn’t just asking about Jonah’s emotional state, however it straight reflects his sovereignty end an irritated Jonah.

Jonah says: “It would certainly be much better for me to die than to live” (v. 8). Jonah may have been major or overdramatic once he said this in his uncomfortable state. Regardless of the true an interpretation behind his words, the Lord determined to have actually patience with Jonah. The Lord ongoing leading Jonah right into a brand-new understanding of that he was together a sovereign Lord. The patiently explained and also never offered up amidst Jonah’s stubborn tantrums.

The Lord had patience with Jonah since he desired to speak come his heart around sin – and also he desires the same connection with you. And also as us reflect top top our very own hearts and sinfulness in a season the discomfort, us too can harvestan perspective of thanksgivingto our mr for his patience v us.

3. Compassion is higher than comfort.

It likewise seems that Jonah couldn’t totally comprehend (or perhaps, believe) the the author of humanity, the Creator the the world, his heavenly Father, might truly care around all people – consisting of the sinful Ninevites. The scriptures never openly state the the mr truly was angry v Jonah, however as Jonah wrestled in his discomfort, it felt the way.

The publication of Jonah isn’t the only location we see evidence of God’s compassion toward a broken, sin-laden humanity. Once Jesus came to earth, his whole earthly ministry demonstrated consistent, patience compassion with sinners. Christ not only interacted with rather compassionately, he also instructed his pendant to carry out the same.

2 Corinthians thing 1 is significantly titled “God that Comfort” and is an encourage to all that proclaim Christ as their Lord and also Savior, and also all who endure uncomfortable of any type of kind:

Blessed it is in the God and also Father of our mr Jesus Christ, the dad of mercies and God of every comfort, who comforts us in every our affliction, therefore that us may have the ability to comfort those who room in any kind of affliction, through the comfort v which we ourselves room comforted by God. For as we re-superstructure abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so v Christwe re-superstructure abundantly in comforttoo. If we room afflicted, that is for your comfort and also salvation; and if we room comforted, the is for her comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that us suffer. Ours hope because that you is unshaken, because that we recognize that together you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort. (vv. 3-7)

4. God is merciful towards repentant people.

Jonah’s unbelief, pride, and also uneasiness brought about him to desire death before helping the enemies of his people. He preferred judgment, yet the Lord had other plans in the surname of mercy. Choose Jonah, her discomfort is an possibility to find your heart and also repent of your sin – it is in it unbelief, doubt, anger, pride. But take heart, understanding that also a poorly flawed mankind is so valuable to God that he died for us. Jesus, fully God and totally man, died selflessly for cruel Nineveh, for whiny, upset Jonah, and also for us.

Jonah thought he knew far better than God. But in the end he learned a beneficial lesson about the Lord’s mercy and forgiveness, which extends beyond Jonah to all who repent and proclaim Jesus together Lord.

Is your Comfort a Stumbling Block?

There is naught wrong v being comfortable — until that comfort provides us seemingly independent from God. Don’t allow comfort to it is in a stumbling block to your faith. Inevitably, everything we hold very closely as our treasured vine will be eaten away through a worm.

Vine, worm, and also wind all come from the Lord, and also all are used for his sovereign purpose. In this, we are not only to love the gifts that carry out us comfort, us are also to evaluate the merciful, sovereign Lord’s decision come make us uncomfortable, together he guides us in can be fried grace.

What else have actually you learned from uncomfortable seasons?

This article was initially published on Offered with permission.

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Meredith Hodgelives in the Chicago suburbs v her husband Matt and also their Goldendoodle Rudy. She is a freelance writer and also editor who loves coffee, security time in nature, and also serving others. Meredith is the writer of"It's Positive!,"a blog pass gospel-centered hope and encouragement come those struggling through infertility.