“Jonah arose to flee to Tarshish,
from the presence of the Lord”
Why Tarshish? Was Tarshish really the place to go to flee from the Lord? Is it still? If it were, I think it would be the most crowded place in the world….
I believe people still seek Tarshish today. They would love nothing more than to find a ship that would take them there, and they would be more than willing to pay the fare. For those who haven’t asked Christ to be their Savior, they might feel that “God-shaped vacuum” in their heart, and it scares them into wanting to run from that feeling. Those who have given their lives to Jesus, like Jonah, might seek a kind of amnesia; a place where they no longer even remember what was the service of the Lord they were avoiding.
Perhaps when you arrive at Tarshish, you can leave your “carry-on” of the Holy Spirit back on the boat. Perhaps, when you are assigned lodging, you receive back the part of your heart that you gave to Him. The deal is off, and you can relax, free from whatever He is calling you to.
But no. In His wisdom and unfathomable love, He has assured us that, try as we might, we cannot flee from His Spirit. In heaven or in hell, on the wings on the morning, in the uttermost parts of the sea. We belong to Him, we know His voice, and His right hand shall hold us… shall lead us.
Ah, amazing grace.