Now or later?

I am currently teaching an Old Testament class on the college where I work.  While moving through the Book of Exodus I was reminded again of a passage in the story of Moses and the plagues that God brought on Egypt that has made me laugh.

There is this awkward passage in Exodus, Chapter 8, verse 10 where Pharaoh says, “Tomorrow.”  Perhaps this was the inspiration for Annie’s famous song.  For Annie however, Tomorrow expressed a hope of a better day ahead.  For Pharaoh, it was a strange answer given his circumstances.  This is the second of the plagues where Moses warns that if Pharaoh will not let the Israelite go to worship God, then frogs will swarm from the rivers and take over the country.  Of course Pharaoh will not let Israel go, so out come the frogs.   The frogs come out for both the rich and the poor; they are in the palace, in the streets, in the fields, in the kitchen, in the ovens, and in the bread (verse 3).  Imagine the excitement of Pharaoh when his magicians come to him and say, “Hey Pharaoh, good news.  Moses isn’t that great, we can make frogs too.  Just what was needed, more frogs. Here the good part though; Pharaoh a little annoyed with his magicians making more rather than getting rid of them calls for Moses.   He says to Moses, “Pray that your God will take away all these frogs.”  But when Moses asks, when do you want this to happen, Pharaoh says (wait for it), “tomorrow.”

procrastinateHow crazy!  He lives with all those frogs another day.  He could have said, “right now,” and I suspect God and Moses would have obliged. Makes me laugh, not just at Pharaoh, but at me and the amazing propensity I have to put off what should be done now till another time.


How often I think:

I will start eating right and exercising tomorrow.

I will make things right with my friends and family tomorrow.

I will look into that new opportunity tomorrow.

I will give to help those people in need tomorrow.

I will do _________________________ tomorrow.

How might my life be different if I take action on the prompting of God’s Spirit in my life today?  What if the inclination of my heart would change to “now” instead of “later?”  How would my life change? How would the lives of those around me change if I would do the right things today?

Perhaps we could get rid of some frogs in our lives and do some good – today!

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