Tuesday’s Column: Dale Mail
The cost of leaving God’s presence is more than many fully realize.
It’s interesting how the phrase “away from the presence of the Lord” is used twice in Jonah 1:2-3.
Leading up to the second mention, the text states that Jonah “paid the fare.” In the very next verse we read of a terrible storm that would end with the beginning of Jonah’s three day stent in solitary confinement within the belly of a great fish.
He paid the fare— but the price was a little steeper than he thought. It’s expensive to flee from the presence of the Almighty. Too many Christians run away from the responsibilities that God has given us only to discover that the dark waters of sin and separation just aren’t worth it.
Some discover this when it’s too late, but others are fortunate enough to realize this truth and return to the safety of God’s presence. May we learn from Jonah to go where the Lord leads and not make our own alternative routes.
“But Jonah rose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa and found a ship going to Tarshish. So he paid the fare and went down into it, to go with them to Tarshish, away from the presence of the Lord.” Jonah 1:3