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Years ago God sent the prophet Jonah to warn people of Nineveh of a coming disaster. God said he would destroy them unless they turned from their wickedness. Jonah fled in the opposite direction because he did not want God to spare the city. Assyrians were noted for ruthlessly torturing other nations, taking their possessions, raping women, skinning men alive and impaling them on poles. Knowing their reputation and fearing their brutality, Jonah wanted God to destroy them before they had a chance to invade his land. So Jonah boarded a ship to go in the opposite direction from Assyria. But God sent a storm to upset Jonah’s plans. And rather than punishing Jonah for his disobedience, God sent a fish to preserve his life and give him a second chance to obey. God did this because He had such deep compassion for the people in the city of Nineveh. God preserved Jonah so he could be a witness to that wicked nation. Today, despite the chaos in our world, God still has compassion for people. God counts on us, His people, to model His love, His Kingdom values, and to share the Good News about life available through His Son Jesus.

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