In the Right Place At the Right Time

Read the book of Esther (NLT)

We treasure security, even though we know that security in this life carries no guarantees -- possessions can be destroyed, beauty fades, relationships can be broken, death is inevitable. Real security, then, must be found beyond this life. Only when our security rests on God and his unchanging nature, can we face the challenges that life is sure to bring our way.

Esther's beauty and character won Xerxes' heart, and he made her his queen. Even in her favored position, however, she would risk her life by attempting to see the king when he had not requested her presence. There was no guarantee that the king would even see her. Although she was queen, she was still not secure. But, cautiously and courageously, Esther decided to risk her life by approaching the king on behalf of her people.

She made her plans carefully. The Jews were asked to fast and pray with her before she went to the king. Then on the chosen day she went before him, and he did ask her to come forward and speak. But instead of issuing her request directly, she invited him and Haman to a banquet. He was astute enough to realize she had something on her mind, yet she conveyed the importance of the matter by insisting on a second banquet.

In the meantime, God was working behind the scenes. He caused Xerxes to read the historical records of the kingdom late one night, and the king discovered that Mordecai had once saved his life. Xerxes lost no time in honoring Mordecai for that act. during the second banquet, Esther told the king of Haman's plot against the Jews, and Haman was doomed. There is grim justice in Haman's death on the gallows he had built for Mordecai, and it seems fitting that the day on which the Jews were to be slaughtered became the day their enemies died. Esther's risk confirmed that God was the source of her security.

How much of your security lies in your possessions, position, or reputation? God has not placed you in your present position for your own benefit. He put you there to serve him. As in Esther's case, this may involve risking your security. Are you willing to let God be your ultimate security?

Esther's' strengths and accomplishments: 1) Her beauty and character won the heart of Persia's king 2) She combined courage with careful planning 3) She was open to advice and willing to act 4) She was more concerned for others than her own security

Lessons from her life: 1) Serving God often demands that we risk our own security 2) God has a purpose for the situations in which he places us 3) Courage, while often vital, does not replace careful planning

Vital Statistics: Where: Persian empire Occupation: Xerxes' wife, queen of Persia Relatives: Cousin: Mordecai, Husband: Xerxes, Father: Abihail

Key verse: "Go and gather together all the Jews of Susa and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. My maids and I will do the same. And then, though it is against the law, I will go in to see the king. If I must die, I am willing to die" (Esther 4:16) (NLT).

Lord, help us to place our security in You, knowing that You love us and will take care of us in all situations, in Jesus' name, amen.

Scripture quotation marked (NLT) is 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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