The Plague of FrogsDaily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
The Nile River will swarm with frogs. They will come up out of the river and into your palace, even into your bedroom and onto your bed! They will enter the houses of your officials and your people. They will even jump into your ovens and your kneading bowls.
I just have to begin today’s reflection with a personal story. My family and I are enjoying the adventure of living in the Hill Country of Texas. Our home is on the edge of the country, which means we have lots of wild visitors in our yard, including deer, skunks, squirrels, and hundreds of birds. Our dog, Sandy, loves chasing these critters in order to befriend them. But there is one variety of wild beast she dislikes: toads. We have plenty of them in our yard. When they croak their songs at night, Sandy barks at what seems to her like an invisible enemy. But, worst of all, Sandy hates it when toads decide to cool off in her water dish, something that happened just last night, in fact. Sandy will stand above her dish, distressed and confused. The last thing she wants to do is drink toad-flavored water.
Sandy wouldn’t have liked the plague of frogs. Neither did the Egyptians, for obvious reasons. So it comes as no surprise that Pharaoh soon begged for mercy and promised to let the Israelites go to worship the Lord. Yet, it is also no surprise that, once the frogs had disappeared, Pharaoh reneged on his offer and refused to let God’s people go.
I have to agree with Sandy and Pharaoh about toads and frogs. I’d rather not have them in my water dish or my house. But I am impressed, nevertheless, by the relative kindness of this first plague. Having frogs everywhere would be disgusting, but not as painful as other options. The Lord was giving Pharaoh an opportunity to cooperate with his plan before unleashing the harsher plagues that were still to come.
I wonder how many times in my life God has graciously sent me “frogs” rather than something far more difficult. I wonder how many times I have still rejected his will for my life, only to bring worse trouble upon myself.
QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: Have you ever sensed that God has allowed painful things to happen to you, but, at the same time, protected you from far worse things? What might help you to pay attention to God without having to suffer in a major way?
PRAYER: Lord, thank you for all the times you have allowed me to feel pain associated with my bad choices, but have protected me from far worse suffering. Thank you for sending “frogs,” so that I might turn from my sin and return to you.
Help me, Lord, to pay better attention to you. Preserve me from being like Pharaoh, hard-hearted in my response to you. May I seek you and obey you in all things. Amen.