Imagine what it would be like to have to go before a president and convince him not to destroy you or your people. You can’t afford to make one mistake in timing, actions or words. Do one wrong thing at this meeting and you will lose your life. That is the pressure that faced Esther in this chapter. There is no question that God was behind this whole plan; but from a human perspective, Esther does everything right in order to make her sales pitch and accomplish her objective. From her example, we can see five steps to making the most of God-given opportunities.
I. Put Feet to Faith (1)
- Many times when we say we are going to do something for the Lord, we often don’t make it to the parking lot before breaking our commitment.
- After three days of fasting and prayer, there was no failure to launch with Esther.
- We are paralyzed by fear or procrastination that says, “I’ll get around to it later.” Sometimes we say, “I’ll pray about that.” But then we keep praying and praying and never make a decision or take action.
- God never puts us in situations of opportunity so we can consider doing something or almost do something or maybe do something.
II. Seek God’s Favor (2)
- Apart from the providence of God, Esther will lose her head that afternoon.
- The greatest thing God shows us is His favor. Though we deserved to die, God favored us with grace and mercy.
III. Be Selfless (3)
- She was more concerned with others (the Jews) than for her own security and comfort.
- We have the privilege of going to God not for our own needs, but on behalf of others.
- Selflessness is always a mark of those that God is going to use to build His kingdom.
IV. Be Strategic (4-8)
- Don’t forget….timing is everything.
- We need to be attentive to the Holy Spirit.
- Strategy and planning are not anti-faith.
- Jesus commands us to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves as He sends us out as sheep among the wolves.
V. Obey the “Whats” of God’s Plans Without Knowing the “Whys”
- As we seek to be used by God for the building of His kingdom, we need to follow the Lord even when we don’t understand.
- Maybe God leaves out details because He wants us to fully trust in His presence, His power, and His promises.
- God isn’t interested in a stellar performance. He’s interested in your willingness and obedience despite your insecurities.