2009 – Day 188.July 18 – A Silent Interlude
Passage of the Day: Esther 4: 12 - 17 … Esther 4 – 5 linked for study …
My Journal for Today: My devotional shepherd, Chuck Swindoll, uses the highlight passage today and the interlude between chapters 4 – 5 of the Book of Esther to point out an important point about Esther and one we need to consider.
The break between chapters 4 – 5 presents an interesting passage of three days where we see Esther getting ready to take her case to King Xerxes. And there is a point to consider about Esther, from which we can learn about ourselves. Swindoll is on target, I believe, with his contention that courage is not a natural part of humanity. It is learned by the environment in which we’re raised and the experiences we encounter during our formative years of development. And we need to remember where and by whom Esther was raised.
In the absence of biological parents, Esther was raised by her relative, mentor, and substitute daddy, Mordecai. And at this point, Swindoll reminds me [us] of an OT Proverb in Proverbs 22: 6, which says in the NIV, “Train a child in the way he (she) should go, and when he (she) is old, he (she) will not turn from it.” And I agree with Swindoll, that is exactly what we see in Esther as she’s confronted with this dangerous, but necessary, step of faith. Esther had been raised and had learned to trust her (our) God. And now she was standing at the edge of a dangerous precipice; and she’s about to take a step which will require absolute faith in her God for protection and guidance.
At some point in life we are going to come to an “Esther moment” in time, where our faith and reason are tested; and the question will become, “What kind of a step will we take?” And there is an important lesson here for parents or grand-parents or mentors, … “How are we raising our kids or grandkids or those who are immature in the faith; … to believe and follow the one, true, God or to succumb to the dictates of the world or selfishness?” You’ll have to answer that one for yourself, especially if you’re a parent or grandparent; but in this confrontation with truth, I hope we see that Proverbs 22: 6 is a good and true guide for us here.
We need to be doing all we can to raise up our children or lesser mature Christians in the admonition and biblical truth of Godliness and righteousness. So, we must ask ourselves, “What are we doing in our families or in the family of God to bring truth into the lives of our younger Christian minds/hearts? … Are we doing all we can to insure that these young or immature minds know biblical truth and experience the nurturing truth of God’s word? … Are we being strong and true disciples of Christ, bringing up younger generation of Christians (including the newly saved) in the truths of God’s word, modeling God’s way to seek His will?” Wow! If you’re parent, grandparent, or a Christian leader, this places a heavy burden on us to do more to raise as man Esthers as we can for this world.
Obviously Mordecai did a great job in raising his niece (or cousin); because when crunch time was upon her, young Esther had faith in doing life God’s way, seeking and following His way and being willing to risk even life to stand for God’s truth. I pray we’re doing what Mordecai did to raise up a generation of Esthers in our midst. This world certainly needs them.
My Prayer for Today: Lord, help me to be the parent and grandparent or mentor I need to be to raise up those younger believers in my sphere of influence to be able to stand in the gap for You and for Your truth when the time comes to do so. Amen