Week 8 – Lessons from the Prophets Cont’d
Day 1 – Esther Cont’d – Stopping the Fatherless Pandemic: Esther 2:10; Proverbs 22:6
Proverbs 22:6 says, “Train up a child in the way he should go; and when he is old he will not depart from it.” That Mordecai took this to heart can be plainly seen in the respect and obedience with which Esther honored him.
When Esther was first taken to the palace, Mordecai charged her not to reveal that she was a Jewess. We find in Esther 2:10, that she obeyed him in this, “Esther had not showed her people nor her kindred: for Mordecai had charged her that she should not show it.” We see in this, not only Esther’s obedience and the obvious respect that she had for his wishes, but also another clue to the degree of careful attention that he put into protecting this girl whom he had taken as his own daughter. A lesser man would have reveled in the light of his apparent success as his ward was put in the best place in the house of the king’s women. In doing so, he would have endangered her future, his future and the future of their people. Mordecai understood the need for caution, and so set aside the apparently close relationship that he and his cousin had developed so that he could continue to provide protection. He was willing to sacrifice his own potential position (for one would think that as the queen’s guardian he might have gained a notch or two in society) for her safety.
A pattern is beginning to emerge in Mordecai’s life. It is one of consistency. Consistently choosing to guide Esther in the way she should go. First, putting himself on the line or yielding up things that might benefit him. Then seeking out how she fares and what she needs. Then giving her counsel to know how to proceed. Cautioning her of things she should avoid.
Today, many children are orphaned, placed in orphanages or taken from their parents custody because their parents do not have a story like Mordecai’s. The child is not put above the parents’ wants, desires and comforts. Story after story could be told of children who are left without one or both of their parents because of the selfish decisions that those parents made. Decisions to use drugs and alocohol. Decisions to live how they want without taking responsibility for their actions. Decisions to leave their responsibilities so that life can be easier. Decisions that destroy lives.
As we look at the pandemic of fatherless-ness, we see that it is often generationally repeated. Society has tried many ways of stopping the pandemic: curing AIDS, dealing with substance abuse, keeping youth out of prison. The true key, however, is in changing hearts before they get to those decision points. We need to examine our approach. What are we doing to reach our young people with the message that their lives can be different; that they don’t have to walk in the steps of their parents? Are we telling them that God is waiting to take them up? Are we teaching them of salvation and God’s power to remove the burden of sin and the bondage of death? Are we showing them that He is there, waiting to guide them through life to raise up a godly generation rather than to send their children back into the same squalor and perversion and godless systems in which so many of them were raised? Are we following the example of Mordecai (and, for that matter, of Job before him) and “guiding” them?
What are we doing today to help stop the pandemic?
Here’s a question I would really like some feedback on: If you had ten minutes with these children, other than the gospel, what one thing would you want to tell them that would help to keep them from repeating the cycle?
Up Next: Day 2: Mordecai’s Influence
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Also Check out Rachel Miller’s Book: The King’s Daughter: A Story of Redemption