20 February 2019
Esther 5:6-8 '…the king again asked Esther, "Now what is your petition? It will be given you. And what is your request? Even up to half the kingdom, it will be granted." Esther replied, "… If the king regards me with favor and if it pleases the king to grant my petition and fulfill my request, let the king and Haman come tomorrow to the banquet I will prepare for them. Then I will answer the king's question."' (NIV)
It has to be one of the hardest of all life's lessons: the lesson of patience. There can't be too many people in this fast paced, get-what-you-need-right-now world who find it easy to wait for something – especially when it seems right within their reach. Queen Esther was playing for high stakes here. She was fighting for the very survival of her people, using the only weapons she possessed, the power of faith and her ability to persuade. Her patience is all the more extraordinary given the threat she was facing. Esther knew that the situation was urgent, that she didn't have much time to act. Yet she showed an admirable understanding of just how things worked in the palace of this king. We do not know exactly what it was that caused her to hold back, when she could have put her case there and then. Because she did, though, God was able to build the pressure on her enemy Haman, so that when he did fall his disgrace was complete and her people were not only saved but honoured in the process.
Prayer: 'Lord, help me to be patient, to wait your proper time, even when I know the situation seems urgent. I want to give you time to build the plan you have in mind.'
© Mal Fletcher 2003-2004