What if we always pursued our passions? What if we always tried our very best to overcome the toughest obstacles that arise in our lives? What if you alone were the only one that God put on this earth to make a specific difference? Now, imagine, you actually did something about it.
I recently finished reading the beautiful book of Esther. This book has challenged me to push myself and others beyond the barriers and obstacles that we face, or put in our own way. Like the photos here, my dad and I pushed ourselves beyond our comfort zone to climb over 350ft of what seemed like a 90 degree angle straight up to ‘Monkey Face’ at Smith Rock State Park in Redmond, OR.
Excuses are endless. “I’ve always done it this way”, “I’m not comfortable with that”, “What will they think of me?”, “I don’t have the authority”.
At this time in Esther, King Xerxes is ruling over 127 provinces from India to Cush. A man named Haman, son of Hammedatha, at this time is elevated by King Xerxes to a higher honor than that of all the other nobles. To pay Haman respect, all nobles knelt before him, except for Mordecai who refused. Immediately, Haman wasn’t fond of Mordecai, and since Mordecai was a Jew, Haman turned to despise all Jews. He “scorned” the idea of only killing Mordecai, so he plotted a way to kill all the Jews throughout the kingdom of Xerxes.
Through the grapevine, Mordecai heard about Haman’s plot to kill the Jews. Realizing the urgency of the situation, Mordecai immediately got in touch with Esther, and brought it to her attention. He emphasized its importance to Esther and told her that she needed to not only tell King Xerxes about this, but make the King aware that something needed to be done.
Up to this point, King Xerxes was unaware of the Haman’s plan. He was disturbed that anyone would want to do such an act, especially the one he honored in his royal presence. King Xerxes granted Esther’s request to spare the Jewish people, and in the end, Karma caught up to Haman. By the King’s request, he was impaled on a pole, reaching fifty cubits high; the same pole that Haman had set up to kill Mordecai.
I’ve learned three things from three characters in Esther. First, Haman was given great authority, but he abused it, took advantage of what he was given, and was punished; in this case, with death. Second, Mordecai was in a lesser position of authority but saw a need that had to be resolved. While he couldn’t make the ultimate change on his own, he knew Esther was well respected and desired by the king, and could make a difference; Mordecai was honored in the end. Third, Esther. Esther sacrificed her life for her people. She knew that for any man or woman who approached the king in the inner court without being summoned may be put to death, unless the king extended the gold scepter to them and spared their lives. Esther took that chance and pushed beyond her comfort zone to save the lives of her people, all the Jews in the land.
I’m reminded of Krista when I think of Esther. She consistently stands up for what she believes is right and doesn’t let judgment affect her. Her strength is attractive, her modesty is admirable, and her selflessness is widely noticed by all who are blessed to know her.
“Be the difference you want to see in the world.”