There comes a time when we get to that moment. That moment when we want to curl up and disappear into ourselves. That moment when it comes crashing down on us that we cannot rationalise, justify or run away from ‘it’ any more, whatever ‘it’ may be, and along comes the realisation that it is All. My. Fault.
Or perhaps it isn’t quite All My Fault but you can’t quite shake the thought that you may have had something to do with it, and it certainly hasn’t worked out as planned.
And once it has come it cannot be shaken way. We cannot do what we usually do, simply distract ourselves with the latest movie, novel, bit of work. It is unerringly there, unshakeable, weighing heavily on ourselves consuming every waking moment and affecting our sleeping ones.
It weighs upon us, like a brick in our stomachs, sitting heavily on our chests restricting our breathing.
We know we can’t get a moment’s peace or rest until it is all sorted out.
Surely this is the moment Jonah got to, trapped in a storm, running away from God, confronted by is terrified shipmates, when he said. “It is all my fault. Pick me up and throw me into the sea” (1:12). What else could he do? The ship was going down, he and all the crew were going to drown, and he would go down with the terrible consequences of his disobedience on his conscience. This way, at least, he wouldn’t have the deaths of his shipmates on his conscience when he met his maker.
And this is the point, isn’t it, when we call out to God. When we admit that we might, just, need him.