Tree Frogs, a Transformation Metaphor

"God's Afterlife Kisses: Tree Frogs, a Transformation Metaphor"


There are metaphors in nature of resurrection, transformation, and rebirth, with one being the life cycle of the frog. Tree Frogs have also been "Afterlife Kisses" that I have received along with others: Pennies, Dimes, Dove, Butterflies, Dragonflies and Cardinals; the latter two I have written about previously. 


Frogs were once tadpoles, which are totally aquatic. As a tadpole grows it becomes amphibious with the ability to breath and walk on land. It undergoes metamorphosis and changes from one form to another. This transformation is a changed state of being. They have the same DNA as they did before and the same identity, but they appear differently and are transformed into a new likeness. So I see our change after death into a different form, but remaining fully the same with our identity as a resurrected being. And of course, all of this points to the greatest resurrection ever, of our Lord, Jesus Christ. 


The week my son, Whitner, died in 2011 I was straitening things up around our house because my family was hosting everyone at our home after the funeral service. Out on our glass porch, I had stacked several newspapers that contained Whitner's obituary. As I was moving the obituary papers to put them out of the way, I noticed that inside the papers was a tree frogin our house! I laughed when I saw the little frog because that was so like Whitner. He loved frogs, such a boy thing. But how appropriate on the day of his funeral service to send a sign of transformation that life goes on. 


About a month after Whitner died, our family traveled to different places to deal with our grief. My husband went fishing, I went with my youngest daughter to an exercise ranch, and my younger son, Cason, went hunting. Cason went to what was probably my deceased son's favorite place on earth, my husband's hunting club. Cason had seen the giant Dragonfly (also a symbol of resurrection as a metamorphosis, which I wrote about previously) in our home and knew about the Tree Frog visit, both during the week after Whitner's death. He called me and said he was sending me a few photos. He sent a photo of the chair he was sitting in on the porch at the hunting lodge. Next to his chair was a Tree Frog and directly above his chair was a big Dragonfly. My son felt his brother was making his presence known, as Whitner loved this hunting club and his brother, so he wanted to be sure his brother knew he was with him. 


The first Christmas after my son died we decided to spend it away from home, where he had died. We traveled to our vacation home in South Florida and as we pulled into the drive there was a loud croaking going on of one solitary lone frog. We started searching for where this little fella was. As it would be, we found him sitting on the window ledge of our bedroom. We felt Whitner's welcoming presence there with us on our first Christmas without him. He wanted to show up for us and make himself known.  


Symbols and metaphors in nature of transformation send a message of love. I do not believe the Tree Frog or Dragonfly are my son, but I do believe they are messages of love from the other side to bring us comfort and affirmation that love does goes on. It does not cease with death. Faith, hope, and love, but the greatest of these is love, as 1 Corinthians 13:13 tells us. These are blessings that I am forever grateful for receiving. They only require having the eyes to see and the ears to hear them. I call this "having your God antennae up." 


"And now these three remain: faith, hope and love.

But the greatest of these is love."

1 Cor 13:13




Afterlife Kisses


Pennies, dimes, coins abound
So many that I have found


Guardian Angels sending their love
Precious gifts from Heaven above


Raindrops to rainbows in skies I see

Signs of hope and promise given to me


Yellow butterflies of resurrection
Rebirth is our hope and conception


Ethereal dragonflies bringing eternal light
Come to me as solace for my dark night


Tree frogs that have been transformed
Showing life does change, is not conformed


A pair of cooing morning dove
Send me confirmation of everlasting love


The hidden red bird's melodious song
Reminds me you are not ever really gone


Love is this life source and prevailing force
That helps me to stay on this long, rocky course


Yes, it is you I will always forever miss
But the afterlife sends to me a tender God kiss


So although I no longer see your sweet face
I am blessed by God's merciful, loving Grace


--Rhonda Milner