Lessons from an Angry Man

Last night we completed our six-month journey through the book of Jonah. The reluctant and rebellious prophet was sent by God to the people of Nineveh with a warning to repent. Our study was biographical in nature.  The following are twelve lessons from an angry man named Jonah.

  1. Despite your anger issues, God can use you.
  2. It is possible for you to live as if God does not exist.
  3. It is impossible for you to hide from God, so it is better to run toward the will of God than from it!
  4. It is possible for you as a believer to harbor idols in your heart, 2:8.
  5. If you have an idol in your life, something you love more than God, you will:
    • Rebel against the plan and purpose of God in your
    • Endanger the lives and ministries of those around you.
    • Make some very foolish, even destructive decisions.
    • You may even, out of selfishness, try to take your own life.
  6. The compassion and providence of God are always working in the life of a believer.
  7. If you as a believer are walking in disobedience to the will of God, then…
    • Be assured, He will chastise you.
    • To avoid chastisement, acknowledge the hand of God in your life and express remorse and repentance in your attitude, your prayers, and your deeds.
  8. God is looking for a total commitment to Him and His will for your life.
  9. You have been commissioned by God, so prepare your heart and mind and then have a personal strategy on how you will reach your world for Christ.
  10. Your message from God to your world is no less urgent than Jonah’s was to his. You must warn them, and they must come quickly to Him.
  11. There are at least three steps you can take in dealing with your anger:
    • One, determine that you will deal with the problem today – to allow it to linger into tomorrow leads to bitterness!
    • Two, use the destructive energy that the anger created to destroy the problem – not people.
    • Three, if there is nothing you can do, or at the moment you do not know what to do, just commit it into God’s hands, let Him deal with it.
  12. And finally, you learn from Jonah how to deal with depression:
    • One, be command-oriented – not feeling oriented.
    • Two, don’t give in to feelings of putting off the difficult.
    • Three, deal with today’s anger today!
    • Four, face up to the fact that you will feel down from time to time.
    • Five, get focused on the spiritual and physical needs of others rather than your own creature comforts.