Read his story in the book of Esther (NLT)

Following Jerusalem's last stand against Nebuchadnezzar, Mordecai's family was deported to Babylonia. He was probably born in Susa, a city that became one of Persia's capitals after Cyrus conquered Babylon, and inherited an official position among the Jewish captives that kept him around the palace even after the Babylonians were driven out. At one time, when he overheard plans to assassinate Xerxes, he reported the plot and saved the king's life.

Mordecai's life was filled with challenges that he turned into opportunities. When his aunt and uncle dies, he adopted Esther, their daughter, and his young cousin, probably because his own parents were dead and he felt responsible for her. Later, when she was drafted into Xerxes' harem and chosen to be queen, Mordecai continued to advise her. Shortly after this, he found himself in conflict with Xerxes' recently appointed second-in-command, Haman. Although willing to serve the king, Mordecai refused to worship the king's representative. Haman was furious with Mordecai. So he planned to have Mordecai and all the Jews killed. His plan became a law of the Medes and Persians, and it looked as though the Jews were doomed.

Mordecai, willing to be God's servant wherever he was, responded by contacting Esther and telling her that one reason God had allowed her to be queen might well be to save her people from this threat. But God had also placed him in the right place years earlier. God revealed to the king through his nighttime reading of historical documents that Mordecai had once saved his life, and the king realized he had never thanked Mordecai. The great honor then given to Mordecai ruined Haman's plan to hang him on the gallows. God had woven an effective counterstrategy against which Haman's plan could not stand.

Later, Mordecai instituted the Jewish Festival of Purim. He had a lengthy career of service to the king on behalf of the Jews, In Mordecai's life, God blended both character and circumstances to accomplish great things. He has not changed the way He works. God is using the situations you face each day to weave a pattern of godliness into your character. Pause and ask God to help you respond appropriately to the situations you find yourself in today.

Mordecai's strengths and accomplishments 1) Exposed an assassination plot against the king 2) Cared enough to adopt his cousin 3) Refused to bow to anyone except God 4) Took Haman's place as second-in-command under Xerxes

Lessons from his life 1) The opportunities we have are more important than the ones we wish we had 2) We can trust God to weave together the events of life for our best,even though we may not be able to see the overall pattern 3) the rewards for doing right are sometimes delayed, but they are guaranteed by God himself

Vital statistics: Where: Susa, one of several capital cities in Persia Occupation: Jewish official who became second in rank to Xerxes Relatives: Adopted daughter; Esther. Father: Jair Contemporaries: Xerxes, Haman

Key Verse: "Mordecai the Jew became the prime minister, with authority next to that of King Xerxes himself. He was very Great among the Jews, who held him in high esteem, because he worked for the good of his people and was a friend at the royal court for all of them." (Esther 10:3) (NLT)

Scripture quotation marked (NLT) taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois, 60189. All rights reserved.

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