Saint Mark Daily Lenten Devotional – March 25, 2015
by Cheryl Crook Thompson
Scripture: Exodus 7:8-24
This passage starts the tale of the plagues of Egypt. (You’ll want to go back and read it…I’ll wait.)
Challenge number one: God tells Moses, who commands Aaron, to throw down his staff and it will turn into a snake. This was way cool, especially when Aaron’s snake/staff devoured all of the snakes that Pharaoh’s magicians conjured up.
Challenge number two : God tells Moses, who commands Aaron, to wave his staff over the water, and ALL of the waters in Egypt change into blood, even the water in vessels for cooking and drinking. At this point, the whole area is pretty nasty – rotten fish and everything covered in sticky, thick blood.
Pharaoh’s not convinced that he needs to do anything yet. Letting the Israelites go is going to create a major economic impact. And besides, it wasn’t that big of a deal; Pharaoh’s own magicians replicated the water into blood trick (likely on a smaller scale). So, Moses and Aaron are just shysters, right?
But Moses and Aaron continue to work the miracles God sets for them. With each new plague, Pharaoh’s a little closer to letting the Israelites go, but then…(spoiler alert) he changes his mind.
At what point would I have started to doubt God? If I were an Israelite, I probably wouldn’t have bothered to re-pack my bags after the plague of frogs. If I were Moses or Aaron, well, the snake trick was cool, but once we got to the boils, I might have said, “God, You know what? Pharaoh is NEVER going to change his mind. Can’t you DO SOMETHING else?”
Sometimes God pushes us to do things we would never do, even if we look silly, or people grumble, or someone continually says “NO”.
Prayer: God, please let us recognize the path and tasks You have set for us. Let us approach them with humility, with courage, and with honor that we were chosen. Amen.