Imagine this…you were thrown overboard in a violent storm, a storm that ceased the moment you hit the surf. Suddenly an extraordinarily large sea creature emerges from the depths and engulfs you in its tremendous maw. You are in total darkness, seaweed encircling your head (Jonah 2:5), surrounded by the fetid, partially digested meals of your host. For the next three days you have no sense of where you are, what time it is, if you will ever see the sun again.
At the end of these three days, Jonah reaches out to his God, the God whom he tried (unsuccessfully, by the way) to escape. A prayer in such an almost indescribable situation is no surprise. Such an adventure would have certainly enhanced MY prayer life!
What’s so amazing about this prayer, you ask? Read chapter two (the entire prayer) carefully and notice what it lacks….JONAH NEVER ASKS GOD TO GET HIM OUT OF THERE (certainly would have been at the top of MY prayer list)!
Extraordinary! Clearly a student of the Scriptures, you can see how Jonah’s prayer was influence by God’s word, notably the Psalms.
Let’s let Jonah’s faith (clearly a gift from his Redeemer) speak for him:
Jon 2:4 Then I said, I am cast out of thy sight; yet I will look again toward thy holy temple.
Jon 2:6 I went down to the bottoms of the mountains; the earth with her bars was about me for ever: yet hast thou brought up my life from corruption, O LORD my God.
Jon 2:7 When my soul fainted within me I remembered the LORD: and my prayer came in unto thee, into thine holy temple.
Jon 2:9 But I will sacrifice unto thee with the voice of thanksgiving; I will pay that that I have vowed. Salvation is of the LORD.