S21P28 – Portraits of faith: Mordecai

Esther 4:12-14a
When Esther’s words were reported to Mordecai, he sent back this answer: “Do not think that because you are in the king’s house you alone of all the Jews will escape. For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish.

Mordecai had lived in captivity and experienced the oppression of God’s chosen people firsthand. Considering the history of his people, deliverance must have seemed like a pipe dream. What desperation must have filled Mordecai when he discovered that an official of the king planned to annihilate the Jews, and that this was because of his actions? This desperation caused Mordecai to turn to God and Esther for favor and influence.

Today’s passage tells us something very specific about Mordecai’s faith. When he asked Esther to use her influence to save God’s people, he was not putting his faith only in her. His faith was in God to deliver his people. His words are clear. If Esther had not helped bring about deliverance, God would bring it about another way. If Mordecai’s faith had been in Esther instead of God, he would have had cause for worry and insecurity. The king’s reaction to her approach was outside the control of both Esther and Mordecai. They would have been rolling the dice and hoping to win. On the other hand, faith in God is a sure anchor. It is no gamble.

God uses each one of us to help bring about his purposes in our lives and the lives of others. As such, there will be times when He will call us to rely on others as God works through them to help us. But we cannot get confused and place our faith in the person instead of the God whose purposes and power are behind and inside that person. We cannot make idols of those who do God’s work for it is God who begins and completes it. Father, remind us that it is not our power and goodness that causes us to carry out the work You have ordained for us but your power and goodness, and keep us focused on You and thankful to You as the one who is our help and our strength.