Thursday, February 5, 2009

For Such a Time as This

Many of you who read my thoughts from Beth Moore two weeks ago have probably been wondering where I have been. I missed last week due to a UF basketball game, but I am back! :) The lesson we had yesterday was a lesson on being brave; trusting in the Lord with your whole heart - no matter what! I just can't get over what an amazing vessel Beth Moore is for sharing God's Word. Wow!

So, we are reading the book of Esther, which if you haven't read, is so far about a young Jew hiding her identity and becoming the Queen of Susa; taking place back in the day before Jesus. To make a long story short, the King, Xerxes, had some beef with a Jew named Mordecai, who raised Esther. Because of this "beef," Xerxes decided that he needed to issue an edict of government-sponsored genocide killing ALL the Jews. (Sound familiar? -- Hitler? hmmm) All except for Esther because no one knew she was a Jew, yet. Mordecai gets this edict in the mail, along with all the other Jews, and immediately goes to the Kingdom's Gates to talk to Esther, who knew nothing about what her husband had done. Mordecai pleads with her to talk with Xerxes, but she is afraid because back in that day, if you went to talk to the King without being summoned, the sentence was death. Yes, even for the queen! (I am so glad we didn't live back then, aren't you?) Mordecai reminds her that she is also a Jew and if she remains silent, someone is bound to find out and she in the end will die anyway. Finally, in the end of chapter 4, which is where we are now, Esther decides that she will go to the King and plead for her people because -- for such a time is this! Esther had to face her fear, trusting that the Lord would save her.

My first question was, what changed her mind? Why did she decide to speak out instead of remaining silent? Because if she remained silent, she would have been denying the reality she faced. How often do we do that? When we deny reality, we deny fear. God wants us to face our fears and trust that He will see us through. Want to know what the most frequent command in the bible is? "Don't be afraid! Fear not! says the Lord." Think about all the things you are afraid of, for just one second. Afraid of spiders, cockroaches, the dark, height, people, ... death. The list goes on. Beth Moore suggested to think about the WORST thing you fear. Maybe it's your husband cheating on you, maybe it's someone close to you dying, maybe...

God would say, "Ok, what would you do if that happened?"
"Well", you say, "I would just die if that happened. I would fall on the floor and be depressed for life!"
"Then what?" asks God.
"Then, I would lay in my bed for days, weeks, months, and cry my eyes out!"
"Then what?" asks God.
"Then, I would mope around my house and be completely useless!"
"Then what?" asks God.
"Well, then I guess eventually I would have to start picking myself up again. "
"Then what?" asks God.
"Well, I suppose I would have to start getting myself up in the morning and getting dressed again."
"Then what?" asks God.
"I guess I would have to go to work again and support myself."
"Then what?" asks God.
"Well, I suppose after a while, I would have to start living my life again."
"Why?" asks God.
"Because you are faithful, even when fear sets in. My God will take care of me!"

You see, Esther was willing to face her fears. She said in chapter 4, verse 16, "I will go to the King, even though it's against the law. And, if I perish, I perish." Basically Esther was saying, if this (fill in the blank here), then... God will take care of me! God will still be faithful! We cannot deny our worst fear; we must take courage over them. Not denying the reality, but denying it's victory over us! 1 John 4:18 says, "perfect love cast out fear." It is through God's love for us that we don't have to be afraid of ANYTHING! Does that mean it's always going to be easy? No! But, it does mean we have someone full of complete love for us to lean on when times are tough. Be brave ladies, for such a time as this! As Steven Curtis Chapman would say, don't miss the miracle of the moment!

Much love until next time... :)

1 comment:

Annie Whitehurst said...

Hey Danielle! I found your blog off Stephanie's!
I am jealous that you are doing Beth's new study! I love her and love her studies... and I loved this post! I've been having some fear issues and God has been showing up in many different ways and places to help me with them, including this post! :) I cant wait to do this study for myself, until then, I'll keep checking back to see what you're getting out of it!
~annie~