S21P29 – Portraits of faith: Esther

Esther 4:16b
“When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish.”

Esther’s predicament may be foreign to us in the western world, having to break the law and risk death in order to obey God, but we have many brothers and sisters in the world who are faced with this decision regularly. How does faith operate in these moments? What should it look like? The beginning of this verse gives us a picture of the spiritual commitment and planning that it takes to make this decision correctly and faithfully.

Prior to taking this deadly step, Esther called the multitudes to prayer and fasting. She asked Mordecai to have all the Jews in Susa fast and pray for three days. Additionally, she and her maids would fast and pray for the same period. This mass prayer with fasting carried power and respect. This was necessary spiritual preparation before approaching the king. Whether the prayers were for courage, favor, deliverance or all of those things and more, this was a body of people willing to make the sacrifice in faith that God would listen and respond. And if the end of this journey turned out to be death, Esther would still take that step to honor God by contending for his people.

God strengthens our faith as we continually take the more difficult step. As we progress in what He asks of us, our dependence on him should grow. The process of stretching us and making us uncomfortable requires increased communion and fellowship with God. We turn to him for everything we need to make the tough choices because our efforts do not have the requisite power. If we find favor before man for the purposes of furthering God’s agenda, it is because God has caused them to favor us. Father, keep us devoted to our times of fellowship and communion with You, and take us deeper in relationship with You as You call us to the more difficult things.