This is the real danger of being a church who refuses to be humbled by our own sins - we create a group of expert sailors who are only more confident and comfortable in their expertise.
Let's go back to Jonah's ship.
Jonah's bought passage on a ship to Tarshish, a city known for its commercial trade. The merchants that go in and out of Tarshish are skilled men; shipping into and out of this port is their life's work. The seas that they are on when the storm starts raging are seas that they know well. And there's never been this kind of storm before.
We know this much because they've tried everything they know how to do, and none of it is working. It's not reasonable to say that there has never been a storm on this sea; we know too much about weather to say something so foolish. We can only say that there has never been a storm like this one. So what happens is that the sailors put all of their acquired knowledge to good use doing everything they can to weather the raging seas, but nothing works. They can't sail through it.
They have to try something different.
The something different that they end up trying is throwing a prophet of the Lord overboard. There are only three possible conclusions they can reach from this: 1) the key to overcoming severe storms is to get rid of anything that has to do with the Lord; 2) the Lord is vicious in pursuing to violent extremes those He claims to have a fondness for but actually wants to punish; 3) this Lord acts much like any other god and requires an occasional sacrifice to appease Him. And once past the storm, the memory quickly fades and their own competence is reaffirmed - in the absence of raging seas, they truly are expert sailors. So they have little need of interacting with this God until and unless He breaks in on them again.
None of this is really what we'd want others to learn about our God.
But it's what they're still learning even today. Most persons believe they are experts in their own lives. They believe they know what to do to handle their own affairs, and they've got plans and back-up plans and go-tos for handling just about everything. If they come up against a God-storm that is raging and stand face-to-face with an arrogant, unrepentant Church, they're learning the same things.
Toss the Church aside. Forget about it. If you're not engaged with it, then it can't cause any problems for you. The storm dies down as soon as anything "church-y" is off the ship. So...toss it overboard. No use for God.
The Church is foolish. They talk about this God of love, but look how violent He is in pursuing and punishing them. This isn't what love looks like. No wonder those Christians are all hell-bent; their God is a God of violent extremes. That's certainly not the God for this ship.
Perhaps this God of the Christians just requires some basic token affections and mild obediences. It would satisfy Him if I would go to church, say, on Christmas and Easter. Or if I pray when things are like really serious...or better yet, just ask others who believe in Him to pray for me when things are really tough. All I have to do is make a general, vague effort at the occasional godly thing when stuff comes up, and this God will be satisfied with me.
And more often than not, what ends up happening is that these persons come to a place where they are only re-convinced of their own expertise at managing their own affairs and have little need of interacting with God until and unless it seems to be pertinent again. They pull into Tarshish as skilled and as confident as they ever were, having had a brush with God, but having no need at all of Him.
Because all they've seen is a raging storm and an unrepentant prophet who knows he's in the wrong but refuses to turn himself around.
Because all they've seen is a raging storm and an arrogant church who refuses to humble herself and seek grace.