Mike Shreve, evangelist, pastor and author, reminds readers that every Christian lives in critical times – full of opportunity to serve the kingdom…
As we meditate on the present state of affairs in the world and our nations, no biblical passage comes to mind any more readily than the story of Esther.
It was a critical time for God’s people then, and so it is now – politically, monetarily, socially and spiritually. Listen to Mordecai’s exhortation to his niece, who had just been appointed as queen:‘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?’ (Esther 4:13-14, emphasis mine).
Dark forces at work – then and now!
Unchecked, Haman’s plan would have spelled destruction for the Jews. In like manner, left unopposed, there are certain dark forces and evil agendas converging on this generation which could bring destruction – on Israel, the USA and other nations – and on God’s New Covenant people all over the world.
Too many believers are satisfied to just enjoy living in ‘the King’s palace’: accessing for their own benefit the royal heritage we have received in Christ.
However, there are other Esther-like individuals who feel the weight of responsibility, who know the importance of their calling and who are willing to rise up and fight the good fight of faith.
Esther was the primary catalyst for change and rescue in her day; only God knows what elect persons are primary ‘catalysts’ for revival and spiritual awakening in this hour. But surely, the six determining factors that lifted that Jewess from obscurity to prominence will be evidenced as well in any modern day oracles who answer the call to be world changers and history makers.
1. Esther was virtuous
If she had not valued her virginity, she never would have qualified as a replacement for Queen Vashti.
So those who will be used mightily of God in this hour must hold virtue, integrity and holiness in high esteem – walking the walk, not just talking the talk.
2. Esther had a mentor
Mordecai, Esther’s uncle, adopted her and trained her for many years in the things of God. It was his passion to see truth expressed through her life. In like manner, any person who flows effectively in the power of God normally has a mentor standing somewhere in the shadows.
Elisha could point to Elijah. Joshua could point to Moses. Timothy could point to Paul. And so the prophets and prophetesses of this hour can point to the previous generation of men and women of God who held the torch high for us.
3. Esther was willing to leave her ‘comfort zone’
Esther could have remained silent and simply tried to just save her own life. But she was willing to endanger herself for the cause of righteousness and the good of others.
So we can just try to live comfortable lives, enjoying the biblical revelation we have received for our own benefit – or we can step out of our comfort zones to help an endangered world and to advance the cause of the kingdom of God.
Remember, as philosopher Edmund Burke said: ‘The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.’
4. Esther mobilised others
Esther knew that she needed to mobilise all of God’s people to be a success. She called God’s people to a three day fast. So great ministry leaders still understand the ‘big picture’ – accomplish great purposes.
Remember the acronym for TEAM –Together Everyone Accomplishes More.
5. Esther was willing to take a risk
Even though it was not lawful for her to approach the King Ahasuerus without an invitation, she said, ‘If I perish, I perish…’ She laid her life on the line.
So God is searching the world over for those who are willing to risk it all in order to fulfil God’s purposes, thwart enemy plans and see their full potential awakened.
6. Esther was part of a plan
Most importantly, Esther (which means ‘star’) was part of a plan, a divinely ordained blueprint for triumph that existed in the heart of God long before she was ever born.
So also, the Bible says that God has ‘saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace which was given to us, in Christ Jesus, before the world began’ (2 Tim. 1:9).
More ‘stars’ needed in today’s dark night
Pray. Seek God. Find your ordination. Do your part. Step into your destiny!
And we will find out once again, that even in times of darkness, there are believers who are chosen to ‘arise’ and ‘shine’ (Isa. 60:1). Remember, they that ‘turn many to righteousness’ shall shine ‘like the stars forever and ever’ (Dan. 12:3).
It may be a dark night, but God has some more ‘Esthers’ – heaven’s ‘stars’ – who are waiting in the wings.
‘Who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?’
Special to ASSIST News Service, Mike Shreve has served as an evangelist for forty-five years and is also pastoring The Sanctuary in Cleveland, TN. Founder of Deeper Revelation Books publishing company, he has authored 13 books himself, including the best-selling Charisma House book, 65 Promises from God for Your Child and the Our Glorious Inheritance series. Links: http://www.charismamag.com/life/relationships/16417-learn-to-claim-god-s-promises-for-your-children / www.shreveministries.org / Mikeshreve@aol.com. See also Elizabeth Shreve’s Inspirational article this month.