The Fix

March 27, 2021
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Listen while you read: "Hosanna Loud Hosanna"1 (Lyrics)

Jonah 1:3-4,11-12 – But Jonah ran away from the Lord and headed for Tarshish. He went down to Joppa, where he found a ship bound for that port. After paying the fare, he went aboard and sailed for Tarshish to flee from the Lord. Then the Lord sent a great wind on the sea, and such a violent storm arose that the ship threatened to break up. The sea was getting rougher and rougher. So they asked him, "What should we do to you to make the sea calm down for us?" "Pick me up and throw me into the sea," he replied, "and it will become calm. I know that it is my fault that this great storm has come upon you." (NIV)

It was time to deworm the livestock again. This is a task that either goes well or it doesn't. Dealing with the goats is relatively easy, but coping with Frank, my gelding, can be a totally different scenario if he decides to balk at the process. Unfortunately, he did so. We tried the wormer paste in between two of his favourite crackers. No dice. I stroked him and talked to him while my daughter sought to slip the concoction into the side of his mouth. Forget that. We tied him up and got stern with him. He just jumped around as if he were wild, as we leapt out of the way. Finally, enough was enough. We took him out of the corral, and led him over to two trees that have grown very close together. The space between them is just wide enough for Frank's head and neck to go through. I led him into position and then we fastened a lead rope onto both sides of his halter and tied each rope to the tree closest to it.

Frank hates it when we put him into this position, and he often fights it by kicking his back feet, or trying to pull his head back through, or pushing himself forward. But all of his fighting is futile, and he has done this often enough to know it. So, this day when we had him fastened to the trees, he just stood there without a fight while we administered the dewormer. Yet, how much easier it would have been for all of us, especially Frank, if he had just graciously submitted in the first place and had taken his medicine.

How much easier it is for each of us, too, as God's children, if we just graciously accept His commands to us and follow them, whatever they may be. Yet, like Jonah, we, too, often hear or know what God is calling us to do, but we turn aside and run away, so to speak. We put it off. We pretend that it doesn't matter. We will do it later — or maybe never — who knows. But, just like Jonah and Frank, when we do so, there is a consequence to be paid. That consequence can be anywhere from minor to major, depending upon the situation. Whatever the case, we could have avoided it, if only we had heard, trusted, and obeyed what Jesus had asked us to do in the first place.

Now really, people! Wouldn't that be a smart idea?

Prayer: Father God, help us to be children of light who hear, trust, and obey You in all circumstances. Encourage us and empower us, that we might make the smart choice when You speak to us, that You, the world, and we ourselves may receive the utmost of blessings. In Christ's name, we pray. Amen.

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About the author:

Lynne Phipps <>
Atlin, British Columbia, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Loved the story of “grace” and “trust”. Thank you.

    You have a powerful way with words. Thanks for a great reminder to follow God’s leading. Blessed Easter to you.

    Dear Lynne,
    How many times have we said, “If I’d only done it that way first.” Thank you for the encouragement.

    Dear Lynne, Yup!! Pretty concise that we can be as obstinate as Frank in taking our medication. Thanks for this light-hearted, but need comparison. Have a blessed Easter.

    Good morning, Lynne,
    You have written such an interesting horse story! Thank you, and you always bring such a wonderful application from your experiences.
    May the Lord bless you as Holy week approaches.

    O Lynne! I especially LOVE Frank stories. I really roared with laughter in the middle of this one because the connection between Jonah and Frank is SO apparent! What a joy to read your stuff and how memorable it is to REALLY help me, cementing them in my brain.
    So glad to read you.

    You are my favorite contributor because you take me back to my childhood on a farm in Tennessee. My favorite farm animal was a horse named Frank. I rode him without a saddle to get the mail about a mile away. I also would get on him bareback and laze around as he ate in the pasture.
    Thanks for the memories.

    Dear Lynne,
    So delightful reading another of your devotionals! You do such a great analogy of how your animals’ behaviour is much like how we as humans behave. Sometimes we just don’t want to do what we should do. How much simpler and less stressful our lives would be if we would just remember to seek the Lord’s advice and then follow His direction for us. His plans and guidance are the best for us at all times. Blessings for these special devotionals you write.

    Happy Saturday, Lynne!
    Your devotion today sent me to research more about the story of Jonah, a story that has always bothered me in that it seems so exaggerated.
    At present I am enjoying a book study and am learning that my upbringing as a child has influenced my interpretations of stories learned as a child. I need to learn to interpret more figuratively, than literally, and so it is with the story of Jonah.
    Your analogy has helped me realize once again how we humans are slow to learn, just like Frank. Poor Frank!
    Thank you! And a Happy Easter to you and yours.

    Good morning Lynne, yesterday, it seemed as if my head was between those two trees. I was not claiming what I knew. We’ve a gelding, also, that hates maintenance attention. Today, I awoke knowing that every lesson I ever taught in Sunday school was mine to claim and I was not claiming God’s promises. Today is Saturday, typically, I view it as another weekend without my husband who passed 2 years ago, and this morning my heart is actually at a level of joy I have not experienced since his death. I know it is because I have been placed in a headlock situation, accepted my dose, and am free of the bondage that my mind was stuck in. How relieving it is to know the joy of the Lord once again!
    Lynne, thanks for the reminder.

    Good afternoon Lynn,
    That would be a good idea indeed.

    I do love your stories and this one is hilarious. The spiritual application is great.
    When I am avoiding something the Lord wants done, I get nagged frequently and louder and sometimes something physical. Until I give in. Poor Frank. I know how he feels!


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