By: Darrelyn L. Tutt

Then Jonah prayed unto the Lord his God out of the fish's belly, and said, I cried by reason of mine affliction unto the Lord, and He heard me; out of the belly of hell cried I, and Thou heardest my voice. For Thou hadst cast me into the deep, in the midst of the seas, and the floods compassed me about; all Thy billows and waves passed over me. Then I said, I am cast out of Thy sight; yet I will look again toward Thy holy temple. The waters compassed me about even to the soul; the depth closed me round about, the weeds were wrapped about my head. I went down to the bottoms of the mountains; the earth with her bars was about me forever; yet hast Thou brought up my life from corruption, O Lord my God. When my soul fainted within me I remembered the Lord, and my prayer came in unto Thee, into Thine holy temple. They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy. But I will sacrifice unto Thee with the voice of thanksgiving; I will pay that which I have vowed. Salvation is of the Lord. And the Lord spoke unto the fish, and it vomited out Jonah upon the dry land."
Jonah 2:1-10
Jonah 2; Psalm 73
Prayer is a "spilling of the soul" followed by a "filling from the Savior."
It's weightiest discoveries are transmitted from our weightiest trials and difficulties.
It's deepest depths plummeted in our deepest pain.
Shallow discourses with God spring from shallow beach wadings.
But there's so much more ... when we enter in and get the whole soul soaked in the blood of Jesus.
These places spring only from the depths.
Jonah resisted, refused, and responded angrily and hastily to God's undesirable calling on his life:
He hated the Ninevites and he hated God's love for them.
He had ways he wanted to be useful for God but this wasn't one of them.
A spokesman to foe and enemy wasn't a desirable trait that a "chosen Hebrew" wanted to be known for.
Surely God could find a different plan and a different man.
Surely God could "see" the awkwardness of the situation and speak to the enemy Himself.
Hmmm ...
 God doesn't ask us if we like the plan He has for us.
God doesn't look for our consent before He determines our call.
God doesn't look for our approval before He gives us our assignment.
God doesn't weigh out the opinions of others before He orders our steps.
God is God.
He dictates, decides, determines, and delivers without apology.
He gives, governs, grants, and guides as He determines.
He elevates Himself and props His glory up on the shoulders of sinful, frail, fickle, hopeless, helpful "things" called people and He performs His glorious acts.
When He looks at each of us and all of us He sees the same thing:
Charcoaled hearts,
Blackened souls,
Scorched lives,
Seared sinful beings.
 God brings us each "into the deep" and He teaches us lessons about people, position, prayer, and ministry.
He teaches us lessons about who we are and who He is;
And we're never quite the same when we've been in the deep.
The Savior spilled His blood for us that we might spill our souls to Him;
And that's what we learn about being swallowed up and pulled down under.
No place preventing,
In each place we learn to pray.
And in the most uncomfortable of places we experience the sweetest comforts of God.
Pray from the belly of the fish, dear reader,
And thank God for the hand that leads to land.
Deliverance is determined by the Lord,
And the fish will cough you up ...
And make you "more."
Three Study Considerations:
1) What's your "fish?"
What is it teaching you?
2) What's happening in your relationship with God?
How is He loving you?
3) What do you think about when you pray Jonah's prayer?
What has God called you to?