REPOST Today’s AMI QT Devotional was first posted on July 8, 2014.
Devotional Thought for This Morning
“A God of Second Chance”
Then the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time, saying, 2 “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and call out against it the message that I tell you.” 3 So Jonah arose and went to Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceedingly great city, three days’ journey in breadth.
God is a God of second chances. This is one of the truths that I hold dearly in light of the fact that I am prone to fail God and run away time after time.
This morning, we find Jonah facing the same situation as in the beginning of this book. God reaches out to Jonah and calls him to go and pronounce judgment against the city; it is the same calling and the same message. This time, after going through the whole ordeal of the storm and fish, Jonah knows better than to run away. He arises and goes to Nineveh.
A cynical interpretation of this text makes God look cruel by forcing Jonah to do what he obviously didn’t want to do. The reality of God’s heart, though, is that He didn’t give up on Jonah. God was persistent in fulfilling the calling and purpose for which Jonah was raised. God could have used someone else, but He didn’t; He was gracious in His persistence. As I reflect on this, I’m amazed. God could have used other people besides me. He could have used people who were more faithful, better at remembering Bible verses, whose lives were holier, but God continues to use me, even when I run away.
This reveals one undeniable truth: without God’s immeasurable grace, we would be passed over in an instant. We should never, therefore, take His grace for granted. It’s humbling to realize this. God doesn’t have to use us, but even in our failings, He persists in calling out for us to be His hands and feet.
Prayer: God, I know I fail you over and over again. Pour your grace over me. Continue to call to me, and give me the strength to say yes again and again.
Bible Reading for Today: Ezekiel 23
Lunch Break Study
Re-read the passage for this morning’s devotion.
Philippians 1:6: And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.”
Questions to Consider
- Why does the writer of Jonah repeat (almost verbatim) the beginning chapter 1 in chapter 3?
- What does this text reveal about God’s character?
- What assurance does this text and Philippians 1:6 give us?
- By doing this, it highlights the fact that God is giving Jonah a second chance. It also shows that God’s purpose for Jonah did not change.
- It shows that God is not quick to give up on people. Also, it shows that the calling of God is not base on merit, but His grace.
- It assures us that God is persistent and persevering in calling us. God will continue to pursue us to fulfill the good work He began in us.
It’s easy for us to view ourselves in light of our failures. Yet, God is greater than our failures, and His grace empowers us to move forward. What failures have held you back from fulfilling God’s call over your life? Pray for God’s grace and a second chance over your life to say yes to Him again.