Monday, February 4, 2013

The 10 Plagues

One very distinct memory I have from my survey trip that I keep recalling is one particular week. Every evening of that week, there was an infestation of a particular bug; but every evening, it was a different bug. One night, there were flies. Another, beetles. Another, these little tiny green bugs. And every morning when we woke up, they would all be dead on the ground. It started me thinking on how much I would hate to have lived in the days of the ten plagues on Egypt. At least I have the comfort in knowing that no matter whatever bugs I may encounter, it’s all in the service of God and God will get me through it. I cannot fathom trying to meet the challenges of the mission field without God’s constant presence and ready help. A few nights ago, I had three of the worst bugs all in my house in the same evening. There was a three-inch diameter spider on my ceiling, a poisonous centipede on my floor, and an enormous grasshopper in my bathroom (I don’t mind grasshoppers too much normally, but this one was jumping around startling me and it was HUGE). I quickly squished the centipede with my baton-like flashlight (that I always have close-by at night, just in case). Then I got a jar and went into the bathroom, caught the grasshopper and put him outside. But I was still stuck with the spider on the ceiling. Even if I had gone to get a ladder (which I was not inclined to do that late at night), I still probably wouldn’t have been able to reach the spider to kill it. I began to pray that it would just drop down dead, or fall so I could squish it, or just leave the way it came. But it didn’t. It didn’t do any of those things, it just sat there. Every once in a while, it would jump and grab a bug and eat it. I couldn’t understand why God wouldn’t just get rid of the spider so I could relax and go to sleep. Then God did something I never expected, instead of removing the spider, He removed my fear of spiders. Now, you must understand, I’ve HATED spiders my entire life. I saw part of this documentary on black-widow spiders when I was like eight or nine and that thoroughly freaked me out (as if I wasn’t scared of spiders enough to begin with). But that night, God gave me a peace I had never before felt in the presence of a spider. Then I began to realize, that that spider, whom I had feared, actually was something good sent to me from God. It was eating other bugs in my room, ones that I had good reason to fear, like mosquitoes that might be carrying malaria. That night, I realized that so often we are quick to ask God to remove something difficult in our lives that might just be something that He sent to be a blessing.

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