2014, Oil on Canvas, 40in x 48in
“But Jonah ran away from the Lord.” Jonah 1:3
Do not flee adversities.
Problems are not random mistakes.
Difficulties are often hand-tailored blessings for maturity and growth.
Every circumstance is an opportunity to rely more fully on the immovable rock of Jesus Christ.
God is unchanging in an ever-changing world.
Feelings of stress and anxiety are alerts for a deeper need of Jesus.
Needs become doorways to deep dependence on Jesus and increasing intimacy with Him.
While self-sufficiency is acclaimed in the world, reliance on God produces abundant living in His Kingdom.
Thanks be to God that hardships in life provide protection from the idolatry of self-reliance.
Jesus said, “’I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart form me you can do nothing.’” John 15:5
Paul and Timothy reflect, “Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us again. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us, as you help us by your prayers.”
2 Corinthians 1:9-11
“Jonah prayed to the Lord his God. He said: … ‘the engulfing waters threatened me, the deep surrounded me; seaweed was wrapped around my head. To the roots of the mountains I sank down; the earth beneath barred me in forever. But you, Lord my God, brought my life up from the pit. When my life was ebbing away, I remembered you, Lord, and my prayer rose to you, to your holy temple. Those who cling to worthless idols turn away from God’s love for them. But I, with shouts of grateful praise, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the Lord.’” Jonah 2:1, 5-9
Jesus replied, “’I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.’” John 16:33