Do as Esther did
“…Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my attendants will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish.”
Esther 4:16 (NIV)
The book of Esther charts the story of a Jewish girl named Esther, raised by her cousin Mordecai, who became the wife of King Xerxes. The King did not know of her heritage when he married her but did so because of her beauty and gentle disposition.
One of the members of King Xerxes’ court was Haman and he despised the Jews because Mordecai had refused to bow down to him. Haman had convinced the king to sign a decree that would lead to the destruction of the Jews throughout the kingdom. The queen was not allowed to enter the presence of the king uninvited, so when Mordecai asked Esther to intervene for her people, she was literally going to be risking her life and was naturally hesitant. Even so Mordecai convinced Esther to do as he asked, and that perhaps her position as the king’s wife had been given to her for such an occasion as this. (Esther 4:11-14).
Now let’s consider Esther’s position. Esther would know that the king’s previous wife, who had severely displeased him, had been banished and possibly executed. In addition, the penalty for appearing before the king without invitation was death, unless he raised his sceptre in approval.
So what did she do? She did not go immediately to the king with fear and trembling, neither did she shirk her responsibility and run and hide. She prepared herself – spiritually. Esther committed to fasting for three days and nights in preparation, and asked Mordecai and the Jews in the city to do the same. Then, when she had completed her fast, she approached the king and was successful in petitioning him, which led to the rescue of her people.
So when we have a task in front of us, a trial of some kind, or even a big decision, let us do as Esther did and prepare. Set aside some time to pray, study, praise God in worship, or fast, and then ask God to give you the courage to face your fears and to see you through.
Father, thank you for giving us the strength and courage to face our fears, and for always being by our side in every valley and on every mountaintop. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Study by Sinead Henderson
About the writer:
Sinead Henderson attends the Northampton congregation of Grace Communion International
Ecton Village Hall
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