REPOST Today’s AMI QT Devotional, written by a former AMI church staff, was first posted on July 2, 2014.
Devotional Thought for This Morning
Then the mariners were afraid, and each cried out to his god. And they hurled the cargo that was in the ship into the sea to lighten it for them. But Jonah had gone down into the inner part of the ship and had lain down and was fast asleep. 6 So the captain came and said to him, “What do you mean, you sleeper? Arise, call out to your god! Perhaps the god will give a thought to us, that we may not perish.”
In the midst of the storm that God sent as He pursued Jonah, he is in the belly of the ship fast asleep. While the sailors were scrambling to save their lives, the disobedient prophet was completely oblivious to what was going on around him. The state of his physical slumber pointed to his spiritual indifference and insensitivity. This is in contrast to the (presumably) polytheistic sailors who could sense that this storm was caused by some higher power, as we will see in verse 7.
This is a sobering reminder for us. Through continual disobedience and running from God’s presence, we can easily end up in a state of spiritual slumber as Jonah did. God can reveal His presence, His glory, and His direction, but we can be oblivious to it.
Yet, God is gracious in how He pursues us so that we would be awakened to Him. Aside from the storm, God used the captain of the ship and the casting of lots (v. 7) so that Jonah would become aware of God’s activity. As a matter of fact, the captain’s words echoes the very words God used in calling Jonah: In verse 6, the captain said, “Arise, call out to your god!” And in verse 2, the Word of the Lord came to Jonah and said, “Arise… call out against it…” God is making it abundantly clear that He is the one orchestrating all of these events.
We also find the remedy to our spiritual slumber in the captain’s words: “Arise, call out to your god!” It’s when we finally decide to arise and take action and call out to Him that our hearts soften and our eyes open. This is what God desires from us as He pursues us.
This morning, examine your life and see if you are in a state of spiritual slumber. If so, how has God been pursuing you? Respond to His heart that desires for you to rise and call out to Him.
Prayer: Father, open my eyes that I may see how you are pursuing me. Soften my heart to call out to you. Open my lips to cry out for you. Amen.
Bible Reading for Today: Jeremiah 4
Lunch Break Study
Re-read the passage for this morning’s devotion.
Proverbs 6:4-11: “4 Give your eyes no sleep and your eyelids no slumber; 5 save yourself like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter, like a bird from the hand of the fowler. 6 Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise. 7 Without having any chief, officer, or ruler, 8 she prepares her bread in summer and gathers her food in harvest. 9 How long will you lie there, O sluggard? When will you arise from your sleep? 10 A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, 11 and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.”
Questions to Consider
- What does Jonah’s slumber reveal about his spiritual condition in light of the Proverbs text?
- How did Jonah’s slumber hinder the sailors?
- What does Jonah’s slumber reveal about our own spiritual slumber?
- Proverbs 6:4-5 warns that slumber creates blindness to the dangers surrounding you. Jonah, in his slumber, was blind to the dangerous spiritual condition he entered due to his disobedience.
- We are warned of impending poverty due to our slumber in Proverbs 6:10-11. In today’s Jonah text, this poverty doesn’t just affect Jonah, but it affects the sailors in a vey real way. They had to cast off all their cargo and goods to lighten the ship.
- When we are in a state of spiritual slumber, we become numb to the presence and activity of God around us.
The difficulty with being spiritually asleep is that we are usually unaware of it. This calls for us to examine ourselves carefully, but to also have brothers and sisters who we can grow in accountability with. Tonight, examine how you are doing with the Lord, but also ask God to provide a community of accountability if you do not have one.