Hundreds of years ago in the land of Persia, a common Jewish woman became Queen. It wasn’t her choice, it wasn’t her plan, but it happened. Esther was among hundreds of women who were deemed beautiful enough for the newly single King of Persia to use and discard until he found someone he viewed worthy of being the new Queen. In being drafted into this, she lost everything: her purity, her family, and her future. She was found worthy, and as she became Queen, she realized that she had to hide every bit of her Jewish heritage for the safety of herself and her people.
Some time later, a man named Haman let his bitterness toward the Jews boil over. He found favor in the eyes of the King, and having his plans affirmed, set forward to annihilate every Jew that was under Persian control. The entire Jewish community across the empire was in anguish; the day their lives would end was in view.
Mordecai, Esther’s cousin who raised her, sent her a letter pleading with her to go to the King and end this plan of annihilation. She responded by letting him know that she feared for her life if she dared enter the presence of the King without being summoned. A frustrated Mordecai responded with another letter, saying,
“Do not think in your heart that you will escape in the king’s palace any more than all the other Jews. For if you remain completely silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”
Realizing what was at stake, Esther summoned courage, wisdom, and the strength of God, and boldly brought her requests before the King, letting her true identity and heritage be known for the first time. The King’s fury with Haman arose, leading to the death of Haman and his family, the deliverance of the Jews, and the opportunity for the Jewish people to overcome their enemies throughout the land. God used a horrific turn of events in Esther’s life not only for good, but for the rescue of an entire people group. He redeemed the situation, and made his call on her life known.
As I read Mordecai’s plea to Esther a few weeks ago, a single sentence stood out: “Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” For such a time as this. That phrase started to repeat itself in my head over and over again.
What if everything in your life has been for such a time as this? What if your heartache, your ruined plans, and your scars are to prepare you for such a time as this? What if the call God has placed on your life is to be put into action for such a time as this?
Friends, we live in weary and broken times. Our country is being ripped apart at the seams by politics, immorality, racial injustice, and hatred. Systems are self-destructing, people are divided, and there is so much pain surrounding each and every one of us. What if we each have a calling that has been prepared for such a time as this?
At a conference earlier this year, a speaker declared that God says to each of us, “You are the one! You are the one I have called.” If you are a follower of Christ, whether your life looks bright or dim, whether things are going as planned or you’re surrounded by shattered dreams, God still has a call on your life. He still has something he’s preparing you for.
So if this world looks dark to you, if you feel that there’s still so much to be done, if you are desperate to see the Gospel reach all the world, take heart! God has called you and given you purpose for such a time as this.