An old post, by request:
This morning, I was struggling. I have been under the weather for about two weeks. My family members have been cantankerous–teething, fussy, rebellious, stressed, crabby–all of them. One hour into my day, after coffee, and time spent in prayer (in the hot tub), I found myself in the shower, still praying, and still not of the right spirit towards my family. I was angry, and hurt, and feeling slighted and tired and… you know.
I decided my best course of action would be to take the little guys, or even just the baby, and leave the house for the day. I knew I was not in the spirit to serve lovingly, and couldn’t seem to snap out of it, and I didn’t want my bad attitude and grumpiness to add to the mix. So, before my shower was over, I had convinced myself that I was doing God and my family a favor by just leaving for the day and not dealing with anyone. That was the best I felt I could do for God today.
So I looked up at God, and said, “So, I’m gonna go for the day and keep the peace, okay?”
And He said one thing:
Jonah didn’t want to go serve the Ninevites. He ran.
I didn’t want to serve my husband and children (those fish-slapping Ninevites!), so I was planning to run!
Just like Jonah.
I stand corrected. I was running from the main ministry God has placed before me. The one ministry to which He has clearly called me–the ministry He called me to the day I married, and called me to the day each of my five lovely children were born into this world by the gift of God. There is no confusion at all about what this ministry of mine is: My husband, my children, and my home. I was running because I didn’t like them today (because of my selfishness and crabbiness and judgments), and I didn’t feel like serving them. But God reminded me He has made it clear where He has told me to serve.
So now, you will be pleased to know, I am in Ninevah (serving where I didn’t want to serve today), and happy to be corrected and in good grace with my Lord, my Saviour, my Father.
My older children, they are getting a “message from the Lord,” because God has shown me some training they need right now and they will be getting it.
My husband, so far this morning, I did all I could to help him with his many burdens–his plate is so full right now, working to lead and provide for our family! I have remembered I never feel happier than when I am able to serve him as I serve the Lord (because I am serving the Lord). And yes, I will admit, before God called me a Jonah, I did just want to slap my husband with a fish. Which is ridiculous. Do you even know how much time I spend feeling so sorry for every other single woman in the world because I got the best man in the world for a husband, which means y’all did not?
And my babies… how I am committed to loving, and serving, and correcting them with the fruit of patience and gentleness and kindness.
Not to mention, continue, as always, to sweep up the cheerios, and the food mashed and dried onto the kitchen floor and the high chair, and do the dishes, and continue keeping my home for my family–this kingdom of Ninevah where I serve (it’s only a Ninevah when I’m rebellious!).
Ladies… where are you serving? Are you serving where the Lord has called you? If you have a husband and children, that is your “Ninevah.” Jonah thought the task of converting the Ninevites was not only too much, but sounded like too much work. How often do we take that attitude with our own family? It is a huge responsibility to raise children well in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, to train them up in the way they should go–to raise them to love God with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength. It takes 24/7 commitment and effort–and requires that you walk always with the Lord and rely upon Him. It is a blessed place to be–and yet….
How many of us are going to end our time here on earth and have defaulted on our main calling? Have you missed your main calling? Are you confused because it is easier for you to have a job and go to work–and spend your day with people who are not your true spiritual responsibility? What about spending your time serving in the “church,” teaching Sunday School, bible studies, cleaning, or volunteering for ministries. Isn’t that easier than going to Ninevah?
If you feel any kind of a tug on your heart reading this post, then ask the Lord right now where your “Ninevah” is. If you are wayward, give Him permission to “toss you overboard” and get you back on course to serving where He wants You to serve–to where He has called you to serve. Which could be very different from where you have decided to serve, or even where you have been asked to serve….
Serve the Lord with gladness, my dearest sisters and brothers in Christ, and you will be made glad! My day is corrected, and I am living in peace, in the shelter of His wings. And I even had time to sit and type a couple blog posts.
Today 's addendum:
If I were to write this post today, I would add to take note that the power of God worked in Jonah only when He served where God told him to serve. Jonah obeyed and went to Ninevah. Jonah did what he could--he got there, he walked into the town, he opened his mouth. He served. But God's miraculous power accomplished His purpose and plan.
The same will be true for you. Serve where He calls you to serve, and let God's work be done. Miraculous work. Right there in your family.
My God is even more good, and even more amazing, than I knew He was when I first wrote this post over two years ago.
Do you know Him? Oh... I hope you do!