Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Unique Prayer Closet

I just read the book of Jonah three times in a row. It's only four chapters, and I kept getting good stuff out of it. So why not.

I read the introduction first--my Bible has an introduction to each book that gives you the history, timeline, main points, author info, etc. It said something that I smiled at.

"In his unique 'prayer closet', Jonah offers thanksgiving for his deliverance from drowning. When he acknowledges that 'Salvation is from the Lord' (2:9), he is finally willing to obey and be used by God."

Heh, heh. "Unique 'prayer closet'." That's cute. (I bet Jonah wasn't laughing.) I'm sure he would have chosen a different kind of closet. Then it struck me how often we find ourselves in unique prayer closets... places where we haven't particularly chosen to be, but for some reason find ourselves confined in. Like a hospital bed. Or a prison cell. Or a motel while your house is flooding, or a financial strangle-hold, or an unhappy marriage, or a life-threatening disease. You feel boxed-in, with no way to save yourself, losing hope and air.

Another thing that made me smile was the statement thanksgiving for his deliverance from drowning. All I can think about is how gross it would be to be crammed in the belly of a giant fish. But I guess Jonah realized that sometimes our "confining situation" actually IS the salvation from something worse.

If you feel stuck inbetween a rock and a hard place, take a moment to read Jonah's prayer in chapter two. And be encouraged, because impossibilities bow at the name of the Lord everyday. Just like big fish, finances, and life-threatening diseases. Salvation truly is from the Lord.


brenna said...

what great insight, Hope. Thanks for posting that! :)

Hope Clark said...

Thanks Brenna! I've read Jonah so many times, but I never saw things that I saw this time. Hope all is well with your fam. :)

Joseph said...

Love this post. I am well familiar with the concept of "Unique Prayer Closets." I find though, that as cramped and uncomfortable as they may be, the best things come out of time spent there.

Hope Clark said...

I know you are. :) And you are so right.