Friday, May 30, 2014

Esther 6-10

Yesterday, we ended our reading with things not looking good for God's people in the Persian capital of Susa.  They have been living in captivity since the Babylonian exile.  Haman, the Persian king's evil top official, thinks he has the upper hand in the kingdom with his plot to kill all the Jewish people.  Today the tables are turned in Esther 6-10, and Mordecai and Esther are able to save God's people with His help and favor.

This story is an example of how God uses situations and individuals with character to do big things for His sovereign Kingdom.  

Today's reading has me thinking about the situations I am in right now.  Think about your life.  What "situations" are you in?

As believers, God can strategically use us for His purpose wherever we are.  No matter what we face, God loves to work through us to bless others.  

Mordecai and Esther are a perfect example of what that looks like in action.

Despite Haman's best evil plans, Mordecai ends up being the man honored by King Xerxes while Haman ends up being the guy who loses his life.

Even when we are sleeping or things seem to be standing still, God is at work.  God prepares the place and the opportunity to serve Him.  

That night the king could not sleep; so he ordered the book of the chronicles, the record of his reign, to be brought in and read to him. It was found recorded there that Mordecai had exposed Bigthana and Teresh, two of the king’s officers who guarded the doorway, who had conspired to assassinate King Xerxes...

When Haman entered, the king asked him, “What should be done for the man the king delights to honor?”
Now Haman thought to himself, “Who is there that the king would rather honor than me?”

The timing of the king's reading the chronicles of his reign is no coincidence.  God really is in control of the situation, making the way for Mordecai.

And with Esther's fearless help and God's favor, the next thing we know, things work out for God's people and Mordecai becomes a well-known hero.

Mordecai the Jew was second in rank to King Xerxes, preeminent among the Jews, and held in high esteem by his many fellow Jews, because he worked for the good of his people and spoke up for the welfare of all the Jews.

This story reminds me that the situations in which we find ourselves (good or bad, easy or hard) are gifts of opportunity from God (who is always with us).  They are God's timing, God's setting, and our unique character brought together by His hands to transform our lives and the lives of those around us.  Our situations and circumstances are an invitation to see what God can do when we let Him have control.  What a blessing!

A prayer for today-

Dear God,

Thank You for Your sovereignty in my life and in the world.  Thank You for blessing me with Your unconditional invitation to serve You and be transformed by You.

Please forgive me for all the ways I fail to respond appropriately to the situations in which I find myself.  Help me seek You and find You, no matter where I am or what I am doing.  Guide me with Your Holy Spirit that is at work in me.  

Lord, You know all the details and complexities of my situation right now.  You know the circumstances of my family, my community, and the world.  Use me to bless and save others like You did Mordecai and Esther.  

I give myself to You, and I trust the plans You have for me and all of Your believers.

In Jesus' name I pray,

Love of Christ,

*This post is part of A Mind-Maker-Upper's Everyday Reading Project.  Click here to read more.

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