By Greg Laurie
“He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end.”—Ecclesiastes 3:11
Sometimes in life we say, “I don’t get why my life is going this way. I don’t know why I am where I am right now.”
But does it ever occur to us that we are exactly where God wants us to be—that He has a plan and a purpose for where we are? That certainly was the case with Esther.
Her story begins with Xerxes, the king of Persia, also known as Ahasuerus, the grandson of Cyrus the Great. The people of Israel had been taken into exile by the Babylonians under Nebuchadnezzar, who turned his kingdom over to Belshazzar. When Belshazzar openly mocked God, judgment came upon Babylon, which was conquered by the Medo-Persians. Cyrus the Great changed Babylon to Persia and released the Jews. Some returned home, but many did not.
The Jewish people in the book of Esther were those who stayed in Persia, where Xerxes ruled a massive empire. His wife, Vashti, was a woman of incredible beauty. During a drunken feast, the king gave the decree for Queen Vashti to come out wearing her crown. Some commentators believe this implied he wanted her to come out wearing only her crown. He objectified his wife, treated her as a servant, and didn’t value and love her as he should have. He wanted to parade her around, and she flat-out refused. So the king, in his rage, decided to remove Queen Vashti and replace her.
God was at work behind the scenes, rearranging events and changing minds in the most secular of settings, reminding us that big doors swing on small hinges. Exit Vashti, enter Esther.
God is in control of your life, and He will accomplish His purposes in His time. He makes all things beautiful in His time—not before and never after.
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