Friday, May 31, 2019

Reflection - Jonah gets angry, God disciples - 3 questions God asked Jonah indirectly

Source (book): "God in Pursuit", Chapter 8, Question 2, Page 115.
By Robert M. Solomon, Bishop of the Methodist Church in Singapore from 2000 - 2012


Reflect on the three questions that God asked Jonah indirectly. What were Jonah's answers, and what did they reveal about him?
PHOTO: Reflect on the three questions that God asked Jonah indirectly. What were Jonah's answers, and what did they reveal about him?
The three questions that God had asked Jonah indirectly not only showed his need for transformation, but also challenged him to respond with faith and obedience.

1. What Makes You Happy?
The only time Jonah was described as being happy was when he was sitting comfortably in the shade of the plant that God had provided (Jonah 4:6). We can understand why. The prophet had endured a rough ride at sea and a horrible experience of being swallowed by a huge fish. He had made a long journey to Nineveh, where he had spent days walking around delivering God's message at the risk of his life. (And after all that, God had decided to spare Nineveh.)

Jonah was not happy when Nineveh responded to God's word with repentance. He was not happy when God changed His mind to destroy the city. He was happy only when he was comfortable. His state of mind and his emotions were tied strongly to his personal well-being.

2. What Makes You Angry?
Jonah was angry when Nineveh was spared destruction. He was angry when the plant that provided him with shade was eaten up by a worm. In other words, he was angry when he became uncomfortable and dissatisfied. When Jonah said, "it is better for me to die than to live" (Jonah 4:3), what he was really saying was, "I want to die because they, the Ninevites, don't deserve to live."

3. What Are You Concerned About?
Jonah was a self-centred man, concerned only about his own comfort. That was why he was particularly interested in the fortunes of a plant - his personal comfort depended on it.

Ironically, the fate of a transient plant was more important to Jonah than the fate of hundreds of thousands of people. God showed him that his priorities and value system were all wrong: "You have been concerned about this plant . . . should I not have concern for the great city of Nineveh, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand people who cannot tell their right hand from their left?" (Jonah 4:10-11).

In A Commentary on the Minor Prophets, Old Testament scholar Homer Hailey notes: "Man can become greatly concerned and disturbed when that which directly affects him is touched by the finger of providence; but he can be utterly indifferent, even hard, to that which may be of infinitely greater value when this does not affect him."


What are your answers, and what do they reveal about you?
1. What Makes You Happy?
While in the working world and enjoying relatively better health, I was happy when able to make enough for  livelihood, other financial expenditures and commitments, and able to ensure the well-being of my parent's family. I was happy to be able to survive day by day, although with the prospect of a grim future.

One of my goal is to form a family but was never fulfilled. There was no family of my own, but I am happy staying with my parent and siblings. I was part of my parent's family. We were happy together, and we managed to get by with whatever little we had.

 
I remember having difficulties to acquire new skills and knowledge. But by God's will, I was fortunate to pick up the necessary skills through other colleagues, and fellow workers. I really appreciate their efforts and time to share the information with me that were important to the job. Later, I discovered how happy I was when I was able to impart the skills, and knowledge to others. When more people knew about how to execute the tasks, the lesser the pressure to remember how to operate it alone, and the greater the pleasure to work together. We could be happier the moment we had these bonding between our working colleagues, superiors and subordinates.

When I learned about God's grace and mercy, I started to pray for ability to overcome those daily difficulties and problems. I am happy that God has been our provider, and has not given up on us.

During our retirement journey, although I still had moments of financial difficulties, my failing health takes priority. I am blessed to meet like-minded elderly uncles and aunties who are also pursuing the same goal daily. We are happy that we need not have to do our regular morning walk and exercises in isolation and loneliness. When we do our early morning walk and exercises along the Park Connector Networks (PCN), we are actually keeping each other company. I am happy with the opportunity to keep in touch with everyday realities during our morning conversations, as we continue walking along the PCN together.

Seeking God as I become a retiree became more important than before. We are now living in a world where superpowers fiercely compete politically with each other through economic means. There is no immediate peace, harmony, and cooperation in sight, as they acquire land, sea and ports, with their assurance of non-dominance, as military camps are being built nearer and nearer to their neighbours. At this moment, more than ever, we need His protection, guidance, care, provision, and love. We also need His forgiveness of our wilful sins and hidden faults. I am happy to be able to start having a relationship with God amidst many distractions.

I am looking forward to my brother, sister, niece, nephew, and their loved ones, seeking and forming relationship with God willingly. I pray that the whole world would accept the offer of Salvation, so that one day, we all can have joy and real rest for eternity in heaven together with God. However, I am happy that God's plan for the Salvation of the whole world will become a reality, and hopefully sometime soon.

I should learn from God to rejoice with the salvation of people, and become less like Jonah, pursuing fleeting happiness and the joys of personal comfort. Being able to contribute to the good work of the Lord is a real source of continuous happiness. I am blessed with real joy as I secure the everlasting life, to be in the refuge of our Lord, just like any other believers of our faith.

 
2. What Makes You Angry?
Iin the working world, requests could come furiously through telephone calls, emails, faxes, and superiors at the same time. All were requesting for immediate attentions but the worst could be from colleagues who totally ignored our important priorities, and cut queue with their unreasonable authority. I would be angry when 'their state of mind and emotions were tied strongly to their personal well-being, and utterly indifferent, even hard, to that which may be of infinitely greater value which does not affect them'. In time to come, it will pose a threat to the well-being of a good relationship. When we searched deep into our hearts, we will have a surprising discovery. What is accumulated inside would one day betray our outside pretence that it is insignificant, and that it would not affect our working relationship.

Even with the best intention to work cordially with people who have obsessive/abusive critical spirit, comes with tremendous stress. Eventually the breaking point will be reached and the relationship can no longer be restored. When unable to accomplish their tasks, their abusive critical spirit manifested, targeting those who are innocent. I would be angry at such obsessive/abusive behaviour after repeatedly trying to explain the causes to them, and faces no hope of their understanding or acceptance.

I am like Jonah, getting angry when I suffer personal discomfort, when I feel that my rights have been trampled on, when I have lost out in something, or when I have been cheated by others. I should learn from God, and become angry when we see many people around us heading for eternal damnation, egged on by the world and the devil. I should feel angry about the wickedness and sin around us - including my own sins and wrong doings.

3. What Are You Concerned About?
I am concerned about my failing health and the looming financial difficulties. Hospital and medical clinics advised regular physical exercises, proper diet, and body strength building. I spend time and energy on morning walk and exercises along the Park Connector Networks (PCN) with my sister. God has been providing the necessary motivation by having the safe environment, nice and cooling weather. He also provides us with the company of elderly uncles who are older but fitter than us. All these are part of the "treasures" in our retirement life.

My yearly medical costs is in thousands of dollars, after government and insurance subsidies. Without salary, my financial situation is worrying for me and my loved ones. However, I am still fortunate to be able to access to medical help for my failing eyesight, poor kidney functions, and irregular heart-beats. Despite my gloomy state, I am still blessed with enough daily necessities, and most importantly the "surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord" (Philippians 3:7-8). He has 'done marvellous things' for us, being our fortress, and the rock in whom I take refuge (Psalm 94:22).

Another part of my "treasures" is sharing the good news of Salvation. We may be like Jonah, seeking our personal comfort and healthy lifestyle, but the coming joy and real rest for eternity in heaven together with our Lord cannot be kept as a secret. Pursuing that part of "treasures" should be our passion and interest. Jesus informed us that our Father knows that we need food, drinks, and clothes. But to seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to us as well. (Matthew 6:21, 25, 31-33).
Picture posted by Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania
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https://assetsnffrgf-a.akamaihd.net/assets/m/1102013260/univ/art/1102013260_univ_cnt_4_xl.jpg
https://www.jw.org/pt/publicacoes/livros/verdadeira-fe/jonas-aprendeu-uma-licao-de-misericordia/
https://veryfatoldman.blogspot.com/2018/10/reflection-gods-call-receiving-and.html
https://veryfatoldman.blogspot.com/2018/11/reflection-gods-call-hearing-word-of.html



Reflect on the three questions that God asked Jonah indirectly. What were Jonah's answers, and what did they reveal about him? What are your answers, and what do they reveal about you?

Reflect on the three questions that God asked Jonah indirectly. What were Jonah's answers, and what did they reveal about him?
Three Searching Questions [1]
It is an admirable thing to serve the Lord and be busy for Him. But God is interested not only in His work through us, but also in His work in us. We must also remember that we are to resemble Him by becoming like Christ, His Son. It is for this reason that God has chosen and saved us - "to be conformed to the image of his Son" (Romans 8:29). If we forget this, we will miss the essence of Christian discipleship. Simply running around for God in busy activism will not bring us nearer to the kingdom of God. That is why Jesus, when talking about the final judgement, warned that many will realise that they have been travelling on the wrong road. "Many will say to me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?' Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'" (Matthew 7:22-23).



We must remember that we are to resemble Him by becoming like Christ, His Son.
PHOTO: We must remember that we are to resemble Him by becoming like Christ, His Son. It is for this reason that God has chosen and saved us - "to be conformed to the image of his Son" (Romans 8:29).
Picture posted by Neels Labuschagne on 20 June 2017
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https://cmsphoto.ww-cdn.com/superstatic/1106694/art/grande/14868570-20488775.jpg?v=1497888836
https://app.christinme-international.com/bv00009-march-april-2017/c/0/i/14868570/sons-god



Consider, therefore, these three questions that God had asked Jonah indirectly. They not only showed his need for transformation, but also challenged him to respond with faith and obedience.

1. What Makes You Happy? [1]
The only time Jonah was described as being happy was when he was sitting comfortably in the shade of the plant that God had provided (Jonah 4:6). We can understand why. The prophet had endured a rough ride at sea and a horrible experience of being swallowed by a huge fish. He had made a long journey to Nineveh, where he had spent days walking around delivering God's message at the risk of his life. (And after all that, God had decided to spare Nineveh.)



What Makes You Happy?
PHOTO: What Makes You Happy? The only time Jonah was described as being happy was when he was sitting comfortably in the shade of the plant that God had provided (Jonah 4:6).
Picture posted by Alamy stock photo

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Jonah was not happy when Nineveh responded to God's word with repentance. He was not happy when God changed His mind to destroy the city. He was happy only when he was comfortable. His state of mind and his emotions were tied strongly to his personal well-being.

But God is completely different.
He was happy when the Ninevites repented after hearing His warning. He was happy to see their earnestness as they fasted and put on sackcloth. He was happy to hear their prayers for mercy. He was happy to see the whole city turn to Him. The joy that God feels when a single sinner is converted cannot be matched by any happiness we derive from what this world has to offer. Nothing can match the rejoicing connected with the salvation of people, yet so many of us are like Jonah, pursuing fleeting happiness and the joys of personal comfort.


God is completely different.
PHOTO: God is completely different. He was happy when the Ninevites repented after hearing His warning. He was happy to see their earnestness as they fasted and put on sackcloth. He was happy to hear their prayers for mercy. He was happy to see the whole city turn to Him.
Picture posted by Flickr Hive Mind

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https://farm1.static.flickr.com/855/29786337788_89d7f4c5a3_b.jpg
https://hiveminer.com/Tags/神的爱
https://veryfatoldman.blogspot.com/2019/04/reflection-jonah-gets-second-chance.html
https://veryfatoldman.blogspot.com/2019/04/reflection-god-repents-god-is-unchanging.html
https://veryfatoldman.blogspot.com/2019/05/reflection-god-repents-god-changes-his.html
https://veryfatoldman.blogspot.com/2019/05/reflection-jonah-gets-angry-god.html



What makes us happy? Our answer will reveal our goals and passion. Are we more like Jesus, or are we more like Jonah?

2. What Makes You Angry? [1]
Jonah was angry when Nineveh was spared destruction. He was angry when the plant that provided him with shade was eaten up by a worm. In other words, he was angry when he became uncomfortable and dissatisfied. When Jonah said, "it is better for me to die than to live" (Jonah 4:3), what he was really saying was, "I want to die because they, the Ninevites, don't deserve to live."



What Makes You Angry?
PHOTO: What Makes You Angry?
Jonah was angry when Nineveh was spared destruction. He was angry when the plant that provided him with shade was eaten up by a worm. In other words, he was angry when he became uncomfortable and dissatisfied.
Picture posted by Cell Code

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https://cellcode.us/quotes/testament-christian-old.html



God on the other hand, was angry when He saw the Ninevites caught in the firm grip of sin and wickedness (Jonah 1:2).

God is angry when people turn to idols, when they mistreat one another, and when people continue living in their sin and carrying out atrocities (an extremely wicked or cruel act). Is that what makes us angry? Are we like Jonah - do we get angry when we suffer personal discomfort, when we feel that our rights have been trampled on, when we have lost out in something, or when we have been cheated by others? Or are we like God - do we become angry when we see many people around us heading for eternal damnation, egged on (encouraged to do something foolish or risky) by the world and the devil? Do we feel angry about the wickedness and sin around us?



God is angry when people turn to idols, when they mistreat one another, and when people continue living in their sin and carrying out atrocities (an extremely wicked or cruel act).
PHOTO: God is angry when people turn to idols, when they mistreat one another, and when people continue living in their sin and carrying out atrocities (an extremely wicked or cruel act).
Picture posted in pinterest

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Of course, to be angry like God does not mean condemning sinners or lashing out at them. God's anger prompted His mission and His sending of Jonah to Nineveh. Likewise, our anger with sin and its effects on man must spur us to reach out to people with compassion. That is God's way, which all who claim to follow Him must follow.

What makes us angry? This question requires us to search the depths of our hearts and check how we live: does what we believe inside match what we profess on the outside? Are our private lives congruent with our behaviour in public?



Of course, to be angry like God does not mean condemning sinners or lashing out at them.
PHOTO: Of course, to be angry like God does not mean condemning sinners or lashing out at them. God's anger prompted His mission and His sending of Jonah to Nineveh. Likewise, our anger with sin and its effects on man must spur us to reach out to people with compassion. That is God's way, which all who claim to follow Him must follow.
Picture saved by Lynn Buchanan to ~~~My Redeemer LiVeS~~~ - Walking on water

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3. What Are You Concerned About? [1]
Jonah was a self-centred man, concerned only about his own comfort. That was why he was particularly interested in the fortunes of a plant - his personal comfort depended on it. Alas, it was, to borrow a phrase from Bible scholar Eugene Petersen, an "unpredictable plant". [36] The plant was unpredictable because it was in the hands of God, who challenges our conventional thinking and expectations, and surprises us with His saving actions. Our circumstances may appear to be unpredictable because the sovereign God makes use of them to turn us to Him.

 

What Are You Concerned About?
PHOTO: What Are You Concerned About?
Jonah was a self-centred man, concerned only about his own comfort. That was why he was particularly interested in the fortunes of a plant - his personal comfort depended on it.
Picture posted by arikodi, Digital Art / Drawings & Paintings / Illustrations / Storybook, ©2017-2019 arikodi - Jonah on a hillside

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https://www.deviantart.com/arikodi/art/Jonah-on-a-hillside-680172635



Ironically, the fate of a transient plant was more important to Jonah than the fate of hundreds of thousands of people. God showed him that his priorities and value system were all wrong: "You have been concerned about this plant . . . should I not have concern for the great city of Nineveh, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand people who cannot tell their right hand from their left?" (Jonah 4:10-11).



Ironically, the fate of a transient plant was more important to Jonah than the fate of hundreds of thousands of people.
PHOTO: Ironically, the fate of a transient plant was more important to Jonah than the fate of hundreds of thousands of people. God showed him that his priorities and value system were all wrong.
Picture posted by B.G on Tuesday, 01 March 2011 at 4:30 PM

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In A Commentary on the Minor Prophets, Old Testament scholar Homer Hailey notes: "Man can become greatly concerned and disturbed when that which directly affects him is touched by the finger of providence; but he can be utterly indifferent, even hard, to that which may be of infinitely greater value when this does not affect him." [37]

 

Old Testament scholar Homer Hailey notes: 'Man can become greatly concerned and disturbed when that which directly affects him is touched by the finger of providence; but he can be utterly indifferent, even hard, to that which may be of infinitely greater value when this does not affect him.'
PHOTO: Old Testament scholar Homer Hailey notes: "Man can become greatly concerned and disturbed when that which directly affects him is touched by the finger of providence; but he can be utterly indifferent, even hard, to that which may be of infinitely greater value when this does not affect him."
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What Jonah needed was a second touch of healing from God.

It reminds us of the story of Jesus meeting the blind man in the town of Bethsaida in Mark 8:22-25. After Jesus spat on his eyes and touched him, He asked the man, "Do you see anything?" The blind man replied uncertainly, "I see people; they look like trees walking around." His vision was still blurred, so Jesus touched his eyes again. Then the man's sight was restored completely, and he saw everything clearly.



The story of Jesus meeting the blind man in the town of Bethsaida in Mark 8:22-25.
PHOTO: The story of Jesus meeting the blind man in the town of Bethsaida in Mark 8:22-25. After Jesus spat on his eyes and touched him, his vision was still blurred, so Jesus touched his eyes again. Then the man's sight was restored completely, and he saw everything clearly.
Picture posted by Teresa Kennedy France on May 02, 2016 5:51 AM

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The man in Bethsaida had problems differentiating between people and trees because he had been blind. But Jonah, who was far from blind, could not tell the difference between the needs of a plant and those of a person. He was concerned about the fate of a plant, but not about the fate of more than 120,000 Ninevites. He needed a second healing touch from God, so that his motivations and concerns in life would be transformed, and he could then see clearly.



Jonah was concerned about the fate of a plant, but not about the fate of more than 120,000 Ninevites.
PHOTO: Jonah was concerned about the fate of a plant, but not about the fate of more than 120,000 Ninevites. He needed a second healing touch from God, so that his motivations and concerns in life would be transformed, and he could then see clearly.
Artwork by Antonius Wierix, II (Netherlandish, Antwerp 1555/59–1604 Antwerp)
Picture posted by Gerard de Jode (1509–1591) - Jonah under the gourd

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What are we concerned about? What do we spend our time and energy on? What draws our passion and interest? What do we treasure most in life? Are we like Jonah, seeking our personal comfort? Or are we like the apostle Paul, who declared that he had given up everything that he had once considered as treasure for the "surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord" (Philippians 3:7-8)?

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus gave us the right perspective on life. "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also . . . Therefore I tell you, do not worry about life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? . . . So do not worry, saying 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well" (Matthew 6:21, 25, 31-33).



For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also . . .
PHOTO:  "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also . . . Therefore I tell you, do not worry about life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? . . .
Picture posted by Brittany Putman on 21 October 2018

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https://ministry-to-children.com/lesson-jesus-says-do-not-worry/



Jesus showed us what we should be concerned about. He told His disciples, "My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work" (John 4:34).

What makes us happy and angry, and what are we really concerned about? How different are we from Jonah? Our answers to these questions will show us our true heart, whether or not we are becoming like the One who saves us and sends us on His mission.



Jesus showed us what we should be concerned about.
PHOTO: Jesus showed us what we should be concerned about. He told His disciples, "My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work" (John 4:34).
Picture posted by  Amos Johnson Jr, PhD. on 11 March 2019
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https://churchforentrepreneurs.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/sadness-513527_960_720-1.jpg
https://churchforentrepreneurs.com/why-you-are-frustrated-with-the-church/



In some ways, however, we will always be like Jonah, because God's mission field is not only out there, but also in us. The Lord is always labouring in us to weed out that which destroys, and to plant that which brings new life. Just as God reached out to Jonah, He will continue to reach out to us to accomplish His eternal purposes in our lives.


What are your answers, and what do they reveal about you?
1. What Makes You Happy?
What makes us happy? Our answer will reveal our goals and passion. Are we more like Jesus, or are we more like Jonah?

While in the working world and enjoying relatively better health, I was happy when able to make enough for  livelihood, other financial expenditures and commitments, and able to ensure the well-being of my parent's family. But as far back as I could remember, I was rarely happy. Every day there was the stressful struggles to conform to requirements, and tiring performing to expectations. My superiors appeared unhappy having me in their charge, and would eagerly replace me with someone else whenever possible. As far as I could remember they would be most happy if I was not around. However, it appeared that nobody wanted to be in my shoes, and I managed to have the job. So my goal and passion to achieve a relatively happy and comfortable lifestyle did not really happen. I had wanted to save adequately for 'raining days' but was not successful either. But I was happy to be able to survive day by day, although with the prospect of a grim future.



As far back as I could remember, I was rarely happy.

PHOTO: As far back as I could remember, I was rarely happy. Every day there was the stressful struggles to conform to requirements, and tiring performing to expectations.  I had wanted to save adequately for 'raining days' but was not successful either. But I was happy to be able to survive day by day, although with the prospect of a grim future.
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One of my goal is to form a family but was never fulfilled. It was like every lady would try their best to keep a safety distance away from me. In a way I was like driving them away, and into other peoples' arms. People whom I knew were getting married and having successful families with children to take care off. I remained shamefully single, getting more unattractive, unhealthy and older. I shy away from gatherings and events, especially those that involved the whole family (husband, wife, and children). There was no happiness in my family, because there was no family of my own. However, I am happy staying with my parent and siblings. I was part of my parent's family. We were happy together, and we managed to get by with whatever little we had.



One of my goal is to form a family but was never fulfilled.

PHOTO: One of my goal is to form a family but was never fulfilled. There was no happiness in my family, because there was no family of my own. However, I am happy staying with my parent and siblings. I was part of my parent's family. We were happy together, and we managed to get by with whatever little we had.
Picture saved by Laurinda Barcal to Paranormal for book covers

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I remember having difficulties to acquire new skills and knowledge. My superiors were reluctant or forgotten about of my needs to be trained for the new tasks and assignments. Also, the educational institutes rejected my request for further studies because of the lack of resources for people like me. But by God's will, I was fortunate to pick up the necessary skills through other colleagues, and fellow workers. I really appreciate their efforts and time to share the information with me that were important to the job. Later, I discovered how happy I was when I was able to impart the skills, and knowledge to others. When more people knew about how to execute the tasks, the lesser the pressure to remember how to operate it alone, and the greater the pleasure to work together. We could be happier the moment we had these bonding between our working colleagues, superiors and subordinates.



I remember having difficulties to acquire new skills and knowledge.

PHOTO: I remember having difficulties to acquire new skills and knowledge. But by God's will, I was fortunate to pick up the necessary skills through other colleagues, and fellow workers. I really appreciate their efforts and time to share the information with me that were important to the job. Later, I discovered how happy I was when I was able to impart the skills, and knowledge to others.
Picture saved by Kat Ferris to Gray and Gold

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When I learned about God's grace and mercy, I started to pray for ability to overcome those daily difficulties and problems. With His help, my parent's family and I managed to sustain, although with worries for the subsequent days to come. However, I am happy that God has been our provider, and has not given up on us.



When I learned about God's grace and mercy, I started to pray for ability to overcome those daily difficulties and problems.

PHOTO: When I learned about God's grace and mercy, I started to pray for ability to overcome those daily difficulties and problems. I am happy that God has been our provider, and has not given up on us.
Picture saved by Wings of Grace, white dove releases to There ARE angels amoung us! - Nancy Noel's Gorgeous 'Be Still'
Picture posted by admin on 15 March 2013

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During our retirement journey, although I still had moments of financial difficulties, my failing health takes priority. I am blessed to meet like-minded elderly uncles and aunties who are also pursuing the same goal daily. We are happy that we need not have to do our regular morning walk and exercises in isolation and loneliness. When we do our early morning walk and exercises along the Park Connector Networks (PCN), we are actually keeping each other company. I am happy with the opportunity to keep in touch with everyday realities during our morning conversations, as we continue walking along the PCN together.



During our retirement journey, although I still had moments of financial difficulties, my failing health takes priority.
During our retirement journey, although I still had moments of financial difficulties, my failing health takes priority.


PHOTO: During our retirement journey, although I still had moments of financial difficulties, my failing health takes priority. We are happy that we need not have to do our regular morning walk and exercises in isolation and loneliness, because we meet other elderly uncles. When we do our early morning walk and exercises along the Park Connector Networks (PCN), we are actually keeping each other company. I am happy with the opportunity to keep in touch with everyday realities during our morning conversations, as we continue walking along the PCN together.
Painting by Harold N. Anderson (1894 – 1973, American) - Guardian Angel, Always With Them
Picture posted by Children in Art History on 29 August 2014
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Seeking God as I become a retiree became more important than before. We are now living in a world where superpowers fiercely compete politically with each other through economic means. There is no immediate peace, harmony, and cooperation in sight, as they acquire land, sea and ports, with their assurance of non-dominance, as military camps are being built nearer and nearer to their neighbours. At this moment, more than ever, we need His protection, guidance, care, provision, and love. We also need His forgiveness of our wilful sins and hidden faults. I am happy to be able to start having a relationship with God amidst many distractions.



Seeking God as I become a retiree became more important than before.

PHOTO: Seeking God as I become a retiree became more important than before. We are now living in a world where superpowers fiercely compete politically with each other through economic means.  At this moment, more than ever, we need His protection, guidance, care, provision, and love. We also need His forgiveness of our wilful sins and hidden faults. I am happy to be able to start having a relationship with God amidst many distractions.
Photo by James Shepard, biblevector on flickr, taken on 23 December 2003
Picture saved by Sibele Tkotz to Art that I love

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I am looking forward to my brother, sister, niece, nephew, and their loved ones, seeking and forming relationship with God willingly. I pray that the whole world would accept the offer of Salvation, so that one day, we all can have joy and real rest for eternity in heaven together with God. However, I am happy that God's plan for the Salvation of the whole world will become a reality, and hopefully sometime soon.



I am looking forward to my brother, sister, niece, nephew, and their loved ones, seeking and forming relationship with God willingly.

PHOTO: I am looking forward to my brother, sister, niece, nephew, and their loved ones, seeking and forming relationship with God willingly.  I am happy that God's plan for the Salvation of the whole world will become a reality, and hopefully sometime soon.
Picture saved by Ada Abraham to Jesus Christ

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I should learn from God to rejoice with the salvation of people, and become less like Jonah, pursuing fleeting happiness and the joys of personal comfort. Being able to contribute to the good work of the Lord is a real source of continuous happiness. I am blessed with real joy as I secure the everlasting life, to be in the refuge of our Lord, just like any other believers of our faith.



I should learn from God to rejoice with the salvation of people, and become less like Jonah, pursuing fleeting happiness and the joys of personal comfort.

PHOTO: I should learn from God to rejoice with the salvation of people, and become less like Jonah, pursuing fleeting happiness and the joys of personal comfort. I am blessed with real joy as I secure the everlasting life, to be in the refuge of our Lord, just like any other believers of our faith.
Picture posted by M.R.N. on 07 December 2013 - I Will Draw All Men

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2. What Makes You Angry?
What makes us angry? This question requires us to search the depths of our hearts and check how we live: does what we believe inside match what we profess on the outside? Are our private lives congruent with our behaviour in public?

I think back into the time when I was deeply involved with the working world, anger and exhaustions occurred together. When being forced to delay or disrupt our scope of work was always a challenge, especially at the peak of our activities. Those situations arise when others took leave from work, and superiors demanded that their bad lots to be cleared first. As usual, at the same time other requests could come furiously through telephone calls, emails, faxes, and superiors. All were requesting for immediate attentions but the worst could be from colleagues who totally ignored our important priorities, and cut queue with their unreasonable authority. I would be angry when 'their state of mind and emotions were tied strongly to their personal well-being, and utterly indifferent, even hard, to that which may be of infinitely greater value which does not affect them'. In time to come, it will pose a threat to the well-being of a good relationship. When we searched deep into our hearts, we will have a surprising discovery. What is accumulated inside would one day betray our outside pretence that it is insignificant, and that it would not affect our working relationship.

 

I think back into the time when I was deeply involved with the working world, anger and exhaustions occurred together.
PHOTO: I think back into the time when I was deeply involved with the working world, anger and exhaustions occurred together. When being forced to delay or disrupt our scope of work was always a challenge, especially at the peak of our activities. When we searched deep into our hearts, we will have a surprising discovery. What is accumulated inside would one day betray our outside pretence that it is insignificant, and that it would not affect our working relationship.
Photo by Frank Masi, © 2003 Universal Studios - Elena Anaya in Van Helsing (2004)

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https://veryfatoldman.blogspot.com/2019/02/fury-and-fear-in-singapore-after.html



I believe as a normal person who is not specially trained to deal with Compulsive obsessive/abusive Disorder (COD) may be emotionally stretched to the limit, and subsequently breaks down. Even with the best intention to work cordially with people who have obsessive/abusive critical spirit, comes with tremendous stress. Eventually the breaking point will be reached and the relationship can no longer be restored. People may develop such behaviour over time due to lack of understanding of operation procedures, or simply lack common senses. For example demanding to copy files from a computer without first logging in, or change website contents without having the permission and a blogger account. When unable to accomplish their tasks, their abusive critical spirit manifested, targeting those who are innocent. I would be angry at such obsessive/abusive behaviour after repeatedly trying to explain the causes to them, and faces no hope of their understanding or acceptance.


Even with the best intention to work cordially with people who have obsessive/abusive critical spirit, comes with tremendous stress.
PHOTO: Even with the best intention to work cordially with people who have obsessive/abusive critical spirit, comes with tremendous stress. Eventually the breaking point will be reached and the relationship can no longer be restored.  When unable to accomplish their tasks, their abusive critical spirit manifested, targeting those who are innocent. I would be angry at such obsessive/abusive behaviour after repeatedly trying to explain the causes to them, and faces no hope of their understanding or acceptance.
Picture posted by Tattooteddy on 22 August 2011 at 16:15 - Portrait of Elena Anaya by Tattooteddy on Stars Portraits - Elena Anaya in Van Helsing (2004)

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https://veryfatoldman.blogspot.com/2018/09/reflection-imitating-christ-difference.html
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I am like Jonah, getting angry when I suffer personal discomfort, when I feel that my rights have been trampled on, when I have lost out in something, or when I have been cheated by others. I should learn from God, and become angry when we see many people around us heading for eternal damnation, egged on by the world and the devil. I should feel angry about the wickedness and sin around us - including my own sins and wrong doings.



 I am like Jonah, getting angry when I suffer personal discomfort, when I feel that my rights have been trampled on, when I have lost out in something, or when I have been cheated by others.

PHOTO: I am like Jonah, getting angry when I suffer personal discomfort, when I feel that my rights have been trampled on, when I have lost out in something, or when I have been cheated by others. I should learn from God, and become angry when we see many people around us heading for eternal damnation, egged on by the world and the devil. I should feel angry about the wickedness and sin around us - including my own sins and wrong doings.
Picture posted by Lolita-Artz, Digital Art / Photomanipulation / Dark - Dark Angel
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3. What Are You Concerned About?
What are we concerned about? What do we spend our time and energy on? What draws our passion and interest? What do we treasure most in life? Are we like Jonah, seeking our personal comfort? Or are we like the apostle Paul, who declared that he had given up everything that he had once considered as treasure for the "surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord" (Philippians 3:7-8)?



What Are You Concerned About?

PHOTO: What Are You Concerned About? What draws our passion and interest? What do we treasure most in life? Are we like Jonah, seeking our personal comfort? Or are we like the apostle Paul, who declared that he had given up everything that he had once considered as treasure for the "surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord" (Philippians 3:7-8)?
Picture posted by M.R.N. on 07 December 2013

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I am concerned about my failing health and the looming financial difficulties. I am suffering from chronic diabetes, hypertension, and bad cholesterol control, besides the failing eyesight, poor kidney functions, and irregular heart-beats. Hospital and medical clinics advised regular physical exercises, proper diet, and body strength building. I need to rely on regular check-ups, and medications to delay the subsequent outcome. I spend time and energy on morning walk and exercises along the Park Connector Networks (PCN) with my sister. God has been providing the neccessary motivation by having the safe environment, nice and cooling weather. He also provides us with the company of elderly uncles who are older but fitter than us. All these are part of the "treasures" in our retirement life.



I am concerned about my failing health and the looming financial difficulties.

PHOTO: I am concerned about my failing health and the looming financial difficulties. I spend time and energy on morning walk and exercises along the Park Connector Networks (PCN) with my sister. God has been providing the neccessary motivation by having the safe environment, nice and cooling weather. He also provides us with the company of elderly uncles who are older but fitter than us. All these are part of the "treasures" in our retirement life.
Picture posted by freeonlinedartsgame.info - Jesus Says Come Away - Everything has Become New

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My yearly medical costs is in thousands of dollars, after government and insurance subsidies. There are still worries, even though the government has "taken away a large chunk" of the cost. With swift inflation and yet to increase tax, even our government is concerned about sustaining the cost. Without salary, my financial situation is worrying for me and my loved ones. However, I am still fortunate to be able to access to medical help for my failing eyesight, poor kidney functions, and irregular heart-beats.



My yearly medical costs is in thousands of dollars, after government and insurance subsidies.

PHOTO: My yearly medical costs is in thousands of dollars, after government and insurance subsidies. There are still worries, even though the government has "taken away a large chunk" of the cost. Without salary, my financial situation is worrying for me and my loved ones. However, I am still fortunate to be able to access to medical help for my failing eyesight, poor kidney functions, and irregular heart-beats.
Picture saved from Valentina

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Despite my gloomy state, I am still blessed with enough daily necessities, and most importantly the "surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord" (Philippians 3:7-8). He has 'done marvellous things' for us, being our fortress, and the rock in whom I take refuge (Psalm 94:22).



Despite my gloomy state, I am still blessed with enough daily necessities, and most importantly the 'surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord' (Philippians 3:7-8).

PHOTO: Despite my gloomy state, I am still blessed with enough daily necessities, and most importantly the "surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord" (Philippians 3:7-8). He has 'done marvellous things' for us, being our fortress, and the rock in whom I take refuge (Psalm 94:22).
Picture saved by ミッキー マウス to アニメ
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Another part of my "treasures" is sharing the good news of Salvation. We may be like Jonah, seeking our personal comfort and healthy lifestyle, but the coming joy and real rest for eternity in heaven together with our Lord cannot be kept as a secret. Pursuing that part of "treasures" should be our passion and interest. Jesus informed us that our Father knows that we need food, drinks, and clothes. But to seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to us as well. (Matthew 6:21, 25, 31-33).



Another part of my 'treasures' is sharing the good news of Salvation.

PHOTO: Another part of my "treasures" is sharing the good news of Salvation. We may be like Jonah, seeking our personal comfort and healthy lifestyle, but the coming joy and real rest for eternity in heaven together with our Lord cannot be kept as a secret. Pursuing that part of "treasures" should be our passion and interest.
Picture saved by visser to Good Night☺

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Dear Lord, We learned that Jonah was happy only when he was comfortable.

PHOTO: Dear Lord, We learned that Jonah was happy only when he was comfortable. His state of mind and his emotions were tied strongly to his personal well-being. We pray that we are happy just like you when people repented, pray for your mercy from destruction, and return back to you. We pray that we rejoice with the salvation of people, and not like Jonah, pursuing fleeting happiness and the joys of personal comfort.

Please help us not to fall into the same trap as Jonah who was angry when he became uncomfortable and dissatisfied, even though people repented and returned to you. Instead, we should be angry with those who are caught in the firm grip of sin and wickedness. Our anger with sin and its effects on sinners must spur us to reach out to them with compassion, and not condemning or lashing out at them.

We need help not to be self-centred, and concerned only about our own comfort. Please help us to be concerned and disturbed with that having infinitely greater value, even it does not affect us. Please help us to become like Jesus, who saves us and sends us on His mission.

Help us to seek you especially living in world where there is no guarantee of immediate peace, harmony and cooperation in sight. At this moment, more than ever, we need your protection, guidance, care, provision, and love. We also need your forgiveness of our wilful sins and hidden faults.

We want to successfully have a relationship with you amidst many distractions. We pray for our immediate families and loved ones to also have relationship with you willingly. We pray that the whole world would accept the offer of Salvation, so that one day, we all can have joy and real rest for eternity in heaven together with you. We earnest pray for your grace and mercy to fulfil your plan of Salvation for the whole world, and that it will become a reality soon.

We want to learn from you how to rejoice with the salvation of people, and become less like Jonah, pursuing fleeting happiness and the joys of personal comfort. We pray to be able to contribute to the good work of the Lord as it is a real source of continuous happiness. Please bless us with real joy as we secure the everlasting life, to be in the refuge of our Lord, just like any other believers of our faith.

We need help not to fall into the same trap as Jonah, getting angry when we suffer personal discomfort, when we feel that our rights have been trampled on, when we have lost out in something, or when we have been cheated by others. We want to learn from you, become angry when we see many people around us heading for eternal damnation, egged on by the world and the devil. We should feel angry about the wickedness and sin around us - including our own sins and wrong doings.

Thank you for knowing and providing for our concerns and needs. Thank you for providing the necessary motivation, safe environment, nice and cooling weather, company of elderly people, and other ‘treasures’ of our life. We also want to have the ‘surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus our Lord’. He has 'done marvellous things' for us, being our fortress, and the rock in whom we take refuge.

We want to be concern about sharing the good news of Salvation to everybody. We may be like Jonah, seeking our personal comfort and healthy lifestyle, but the coming joy and real rest for eternity in heaven together with our Lord cannot be kept as a secret. Pursuing that part of ‘treasures’ should be our passion and interest. Jesus informed us that our Father knows that we need food, drinks, and clothes. But to seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to us as well.

Through Lord Jesus Christ we pray. Amen!

Picture saved by Linda to “ Fantasy”, art of dream
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Reflection - Jonah gets angry, God disciples - 3 questions God asked Jonah indirectly
Question from source (book): "God in Pursuit", Chapter 8, Question 2, Page 115.
By Robert M. Solomon, Bishop of the Methodist Church in Singapore from 2000 - 2012





Also from the same author, Robert M. Solomon

"Faithful to the end", A Preacher's Exposition of 2 Timothy, @ 2014 by Robert M. Solomon

'Faithful to the end', A Preacher's Exposition of 2 Timothy, @ 2014 by Robert M. Solomon<br>
Reflection - Faithful to the end (Links)
https://veryfatoldman.blogspot.com/2017/06/reflection-faithful-to-end-links.html


"Finding rest for the soul" Responding to Jesus' Invitation in Matthew 11:28-29, © 2016 by Robert M. Solomon

Reflection - Finding rest for the soul (Links)
Reflection - Finding rest for the soul (Links)
https://veryfatoldman.blogspot.com/2018/10/reflection-finding-rest-for-soul-links.html




Reference
[1] From "God in Pursuit" Lessons from the Book of Jonah, Copyright © 2017 by Robert M. Solomon, ISBN 978-1-62707-801-6, Part IV: Jonah 4:1-11, Chapter 8 "Jonah gets angry, God disciples", Page 109-115.

[36] Peterson, Under the Unpredictable Plant: An Exploration in Vocational Holiness.

[37] Hailey, A Commentary on the Minor Prophets, 80.



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Jonah 4:3 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jonah+4%3A3&version=NIV

Jonah 4:6 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jonah+4%3A6&version=NIV

Jonah 4:10-11 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jonah+4%3A10-11&version=NIV

Mark 8:22-25 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=+Mark+8%3A22-25&version=NIV

Matthew 6:21, 25, 31-33 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+6%3A21%2C+25%2C+31-33&version=NIV

Matthew 7:22-23 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+7%3A22-23&version=NIV

Matthew 11:28-29 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+11%3A28-29&version=NIV

Philippians 3:7-8 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Philippians+3%3A7-8&version=NIV

Psalm 94:22 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalm+94%3A22&version=NIV

Romans 8:29 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+8%3A29&version=NIV