I enjoy reading the story of Jonah; there is something about this story that helps me understand that even a prophet like Jonah was still just human. Jonah had problems just like everyone else; his story reveals the real hardships and frustrations that we can face today in our own lives. God uses a reluctant servant to show us the power of His great love and mercy in a culture that deserved judgment for their sins. It took Jonah three days to walk through the city proclaiming judgment and right before his eyes he saw people turning towards God pleading for Him to save them. This story, like many others in scripture gives me hope for the culture we live in today.
Micah’s story in some ways is much like that of Jonah without much of the personal struggles that surrounded his ministry. Micah’s story was encouraging in the sense that his message to the faithful remnant was this: even though they were surrounded by a culture that would eventually be destroyed there was hope; they had the assurance of the promise given to Abraham from God. Micah’s message and the message of the other prophets was reaching into the lives of the Israelites, God’s message was being heard, His love was for everyone and that for today is an encouragement for us to continue reaching out into our own communities.
I think about Jonah when I read through the book of Nahum, I believe its my human nature that makes me think that if Jonah would have been around during the destruction of Nineveh there would have been some part of him that did a little “happy dance”. This “book ended” relationship we read about between the ministries of these two prophets surrounds a culture of people who were lost and openly disobedient to the standard of living that God set out for them. When Christ comes again, I pray that we are in a better place than the people of Nineveh; I pray that as believers we will have done all we could do to proclaim the name of Jesus into the cultures that surround us.