Talk about a man intent on fleeing from God. Jonah was so obstinate that he continually fought against what God wanted him to do, eventually boarding a boat with a bunch of men and heading away from where God was sending him. When the time came that everyone on the boat was endangered because of his disobedience and he was tossed overboard, there wasn’t much hope. It’s not as if he had on a life vest or was in a nice quiet lake. It was a situation of sure drowning, when God provided the fish as his refuge.
Though Jonah was a headstrong and stubborn man, he recognized that his current situation of safety could only be credited to God. It wasn’t a pretty place to be…I can’t think of anyone, aside from a young fish enthusiast, who would relish the thought of being swallowed by a big fish. Jonah realized that he was the recipient of God’s mercy and grace. He in no way deserved salvation of any type. He did deserve to be separated from God. Even as he had spent so much time angrily running from God’s instructions, he knew that the one true God deserved all glory, honor, and praise. He wrote this prayer in the form of a song as he praised God, committing to offer sacrifices and follow Him.
What situations are you in that you should be praising God for? Has he provided a less than pretty rescue for your stubborn disobedience? Are you in a place or faced with an opportunity that you know only God could be responsible for? One thing is certain, we all suffer from the same sin problem. None of us deserve salvation, and we all deserve to be separated from God. Even in the midst of our sin and disobedience God provides a solution. He provided the best sacrifice. He is worthy of our praise! Let’s respond with praise and thanksgiving!