Take This Frog from Me
Plead with the Lord to take away the frogs from me and from my people, and I will let the people go to sacrifice to the Lord. Exodus 8:8
In my drug addiction, whenever I felt the heat of consequences approaching, I began praying desperately, bargaining with God. God, if you get me out of this, I swear, I’ll never use again. As soon as the heat of consequence dissipated, I revealed the emptiness of my promises as I went right back to my previous behavior.
Pharaoh, in the story of the 10 plagues, tried similarly, to bargain with God. Several times, Moses commanded him to release the Israelites, Pharaoh refused, and God sent a plague. Then, in the misery of the consequences, Pharaoh bargained with God. Just make the frogs go away and I will let the Israelites go! As soon as the frogs were gone though, he hardened his heart (Exodus 8:15) and changed his mind. Pharaoh had not truly repented, he just wanted the frogs gone.
We often do this to God in our trials. Focusing not on how God wants to use the frogs in our lives, we just want the frogs gone. So, we bargain with God. If You do this for me, I will do for you. Then, with the misery gone, we betray our dishonesty when we fail to change anything.
Bargaining with God is usually a sure sign that we are not ready for change. In bargaining, we are not focused on God and His will, but rather, we are still focused on ourselves. It is in faith that we go to God, asking His purpose. What is it that You want me to learn from this? How do I need to change? Please work your will in me before you remove the frogs.
God uses the frogs to shape and grow us. It would be a tragedy if we had to go through the misery of the frogs and never learned from the experience.