Reading Esther

The book of Esther is unique in the Bible because nowhere does it mention “God” at all, or make any direct reference to Him.  There are only three places (possibly four) it gets anywhere close: when Mordecai tells Esther that deliverance will arise “from another place” if she doesn’t act, when he  clearly believes in a purposeful force behind events, suggesting that Esther has risen to the queenship “for such a time as this,” and when Esther calls for a time of fasting, no doubt with prayer in mind.

The possible-fourth place is when Haman’s family and friends suggest that Haman will not prevail against Mordecai because he is a Jew, perhaps thinking of the Jews divine history under God’s protection.

I almost skipped it in my Bible reading.  I love the book–it’s one of my favorite “adventure stories” in the Bible, and Esther and Mordecai are fascinating characters.  And I’d come to it in the course of my regular Bible reading, having just finished Nehemiah.

But I was going through some challenging personal things and I thought of maybe skipping Esther and going to the Psalms or the Gospels; someplace where the hand of God was evident and powerful.  I thought my faith could use a little building up, and Esther wasn’t where I needed to be.

Esther was exactly where I needed to be.

Here’s the lesson, and I won’t belabor the point: even when things seem grim and God seems a long way away, He is very close and in absolute control.  Everything is going to work out all right for those whose trust is in the Lord.

I needed to be reminded of that in this season.

Hope all’s well out there, friends, and God bless.