Monday, October 8, 2012


I've been reading through a Bible-in-a-year plan, and a few weeks ago was in the book of Esther. If you have never read this book in the Bible, I encourage you to do so. It's an amazing story about how God works through His people, according to His perfect plan.

The part of Esther I'm going to focus on is from chapter 4. To provide you with a brief background, Esther (her Hebrew name was Hadassah) was an orphan who lived with her uncle Mordecai in the city of Susa under King Ahasuerus' reign. The king ordered that all the choicest young and beautiful women be rounded up and beautified for one year. Then each woman was given one night, one chance with the king before the king would decide which woman would become his wife. The king chose Esther and she became his wife. At this same time, there was an evil and very prideful man who was named Haman. Without sharing all the details (seriously, you should read the book for yourself), Haman hated Jews, and he manipulated the king into passing a law that would allow for the complete death and destruction of all the Jewish people in the kingdom. You see, the king did not know that his own wife was one of the Jewish people because her uncle Mordecai instructed her to hide that fact from the king for her own safety, and he was the one who changed her name to Esther before she was taken into the king's palace. So when this law was passed that would allow for Haman to slaughter all the Jewish people, Mordecai immediately went to Esther to plead her help. Here's how it went down:

Esther 4:8-17
8 He (Mordecai) also gave him (Hathach, Esther's messenger boy) a copy of the text of the edict which had been issued in Susa for their destruction, that he might show Esther and inform her, and to order her to go in to the king to implore his favor and to plead with him for her people.

9 Hathach came back and related Mordecai's words to Esther. 10 Then Esther spoke to Hathach and ordered him to reply to Mordecai: 11 "All the king's servants and the people of the king's provinces know that for any man or woman who comes to the king to the inner court who is not summoned, he has but one law, that he be put to death, unless the king holds out to him the golden scepter so that he may live. And I have not been summoned to come to the king for these thirty days." 12 They related Esther's words to Mordecai.

13 Then Mordecai told them to reply to Esther, "Do not imagine that you in the king's palace can escape any more than all the Jews. 14 For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place and you and your father's house will perish. And who knows whether you have not attained royalty for such a time as this?"

15 Then Esther told them to reply to Mordecai, 16 "Go, assemble all the Jews who are found in Susa, and fast for me; do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my maidens also will fast in the same way. And thus I will go in to the king, which is not according to the law; and if I perish, I perish." 17 So Mordecai went away and did just as Esther had commanded him.

Verses 8-12 show how Esther experienced feelings of fear. She probably knew deep down that it was the right thing to do - to go to the king even though unsummoned, risking her very life - but she was initially afraid. It only took some tough love from her uncle in verses 13-14 to give her the courage to face that fear and trust in God.

I love the way Mordecai challenges Esther. The way he reminds her that God has a plan. His plan is perfect. And most importantly, His plan will not be changed. Esther could either choose to be a part of His plan, by helping the Jewish people and go to the king unsummoned, or choose to cling to her fear and wait it out. Mordecai said in verse 14 that relief and deliverance would come from another place if Esther chose to remain silent. God's plan will not be swayed, even by the disobedience of His people. He will find someone else to obey Him.

Even more so, Mordecai pointed out to Esther in verse 14, that perhaps God appointed her to the position of queen for this specific time and purpose. Isn't that incredible? God orchestrated the set of events that led to Esther being made queen. From her very birth, as a naturally beautiful knock-out of a woman, to being chosen from amongst all the other knock-outs in the kingdom.

So again, Esther was faced with a choice: to play a part in God's plan or not. Whether to remain silent, in effect being useless to and failing to serve God, or not. In verses 15-17, Esther made her choice. "If I perish, I perish"

She was resolved to obey the will of God, no matter the consequences. No matter if her life was at stake. No matter if she was scared. She recognized that she was chosen for a specific purpose, and ran with it. Trusting God to do the rest.

In my opinion, Esther is one of my favorite examples of a God-fearing woman in the Bible. She sets such a great example for me.

I did not choose to struggle with infertility. I certainly did not choose to experience this pain and suffering. But God chose me. Though he may not be directly causing my infertility (recall from this post that God does not cause suffering, but allows it to come about and then uses it for His good and glory), he certainly allowed it to take place because He knew that I possessed the character qualities and personality to serve Him and work according to His plan to bring Him glory.

This is an important and very encouraging point that Beth Moore also mentioned in her book, Get Out of That Pit. That when you experience hardship, there can be a tendency to blame God for why that hardship could be happening to you. But Beth Moore makes it clear that God isn't picking on you...he picked you out.

Take comfort in that truth. God is not bound by time. He knows all things, down to smallest molecule, for all past, present, and future. Whatever hardship you're experiencing, is because He has chosen you to help His people. To be a light for Him. To bring glory to Him. He looked at all of time, all that there is, and He decided to allow you to experience this hardship because you are the right person for the job. You were chosen to face this hardship.

Even though it hurts. A LOT. Even though you're battling a multitude of fears and what-ifs. Obey Him. Trust Him to handle the rest. Trust Him with every aspect of your life - your physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual safety. Trust Him.

Love & Hope,

No comments:

Post a Comment