Saturday, June 28, 2008

Esther - We Finally Meet...

Esther 2:5-9 Now there was in the citadel of Susa a Jew of the tribe of Benjamin, named Mordecai son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, who had been carried into exile from Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, among those taken captive with Jehoiachin king of Judah. Mordecai had a cousin named Hadassah, whom he had brought up because she had neither father nor mother. This girl, who was also known as Esther, was lovely in form and features, and Mordecai had taken her as his own daughter when her father and mother died. When the king's order and edict had been proclaimed, many girls were brought to the citadel of Susa and put under the care of Hegai. Esther also was taken to the king's palace and entrusted to Hegai, who had charge of the harem. The girl pleased him and won his favor. Immediately he provided her with her beauty treatments and special food. He assigned to her seven maids selected from the king's palace and moved her and her maids into the best place in the harem.

Mordecai had it rough. He was a Jew whose home had been captured and he was forced into exile into the land that was ruled by King Xerxes. On top of which, he took on the responsibility of raising a daughter - his cousin Hadassah- when her parents had died. Single parenting is NOT new - and the struggles were just as real then as they are now.

Meet Hadassah. An orphan at a young age - the loss, anger, sadness that must come with losing both parents is more than I can comprehend, since both of mine are still such a strong part of my life. Then to move in with a cousin who was kind enough to watch over you - yet still not your mom and dad - only to have your home taken captive, and forced to move to a new land. Moving was not what it is today. It's not like they could hop on a plane and hire "Two Men and a Truck" to finish off the rest of the house. It was a lot of work.

Hadassah grew up and was now part of the ladies being gathered for the kings' pleasure. What a predicament. Now she was once again being torn from the home she knew and loved to a place of strangers and ways that were different from her own as a Jewish girl. To perhaps marry a man she had never met. Oh, and by the way, your name is now Esther - don't tell anyone we changed it. Mordecai was trying to cover her Jewish background in hopes to protect her.

Esther comes into the palace and immediately wins the attention of the guy in charge of all the women. Soon, he is giving her special treatments, giving her special foods, the best room in the place...

Let's look at this again: Esther didn't use the fact that she was an orphan to excuse bad behavior. Esther didn't use the fact that she was forced into exile as an excuse for bad decisions. Esther didn't use the fact that she was taken from her home to live with a man she did not know and perhaps become his wife as an excuse for her attitude. She took her situations as they came and made the best of them. God doesn't look at your past - and He certainly won't accept your excuses - But He does promise to be with us all along the way, and with that knowledge Phillipians 3:14 - We can follow in His footsteps.


1 wonderful insights:

Angela @ Refresh My Soul Blog said...

Hey girl, I wanted to invite you to a pilot Bible study I am doing at my blog. No pressure-just pray about it and let me know if interested.
Much love,
Angela