Wednesday, March 24, 2010

His Word Wednesday

The Jewish people.  There have never really been a huge population of Jews yet they are the most feared and hated people throughout history.  Hitler isn't the only one that attempted to wipe the Jews off the face of the planet, we can read about Haman and his plan to kill all the Jews in 127 Provinces from India to Ethiopia in a day.  Look at the news today as the Arab countries rant, rave, and rail against the people in a tiny sliver of land known as Israel.  The Arabs are plotting and planning the demise of the Jews in that land for what?  Why, throughout history, have kings and nations hated, with such venom, the nation of Israel, the Jewish people?  They aren't exactly Napoleons or Ceasar Augustus or any other world conquering people.  They are a small people, in a small sliver of land who wish to live, and back in the day, serve their God.  Which brings me to my next question:  are those who hate the Jews so much honestly afraid of the people OR the God they worship?  "Hear, O Israel: the LORD our God, the LORD is one!  You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength."--Deuteronomy 6:4-5

"The LORD did not set His love on you nor choose you because you were more in number than any other people, for you were the least of all peoples:"--Deuteronomy 7:7 (emphasis is mine)  God chose the nation of Israel because they were the weakest and possibly one of the smallest of all the nations.  You know, God is still in the habit of choosing the weakest or least likely person or people to call His own.  Mary, the mother of Jesus, was a lowly teenaged girl from the middle of nowhere.  Joseph, the step-father of Jesus, was a carpenter from the middle of nowhere.  David, the little shepherd boy whose father and brothers barely noticed when he was around, became the greatest king that Israel STILL talks about today.  Moses was content to watch his father-in-laws flocks on the backside of some desert.  Look at Daniel and Joseph, they were second in command under the mighty king of land.  Daniel was taken as a pre-teen or teen from his family but remembered all he had been taught and stood up for what he knew was right.  Joseph was ripped from his family by his own brothers. 

This leads me to one of my all time favorite historical, Biblical heroines, Esther.  God used her in a mighty, mighty way to rescue/redeem a remnant of Jewish believers.  Esther is an orphan, raised by a loving Uncle.  She is uncommonly beautiful but other than that she is "average" and probably less so since she is an orphan.  She is ripped from the only family she has left as the king's men gather up the beautiful women of the land.  She goes on to steal the heart of the king and becomes queen of the land just in time to save the Jews, her people, from being mass murdered.

There are so many lessons that we can learn from Esther:  obedience to authority, trust in God even when it seems like He's not listening, ask for help (she asked the Jewish people to fast and pray for her), courage and boldness in the face of adversity, self-sacrifice (she didn't know if the king would chop off her head or allow her to live), patience and timing, and the right words at the right time.

"And Mordecai told them to answer Esther:  '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

There are 2 things that stand out to me as I read this passage, yet again.  One: "relief and deliverance will arise...from another place".  God will accomplish His goal whether you are a part of it or not.  Either you get to be in on what God is doing or get out of the way.  God accomplishes His goals on this earth through His people!  I desparately want to be one of the people He uses and not one who is left on the sidelines.  This is a constant prayer: here I am, use me!  The joy that comes only from doing the will of God is comparable to nothing else I have ever experienced.  Two: "who knows whether you have come...for such a time as this?"  Why am I here?  What is my purpose?  I am here, right now, to serve Him.  To stand up for what is right even when it isn't popular.  My purpose is to love the Lord with all my heart, all my soul, and all my strength.  If I do that, then circumstances will be just that: circumstances.  I am determined to keep my eyes on the Lord, to not see the waves and the lightening or to hear the thunder, and to walk on the water towards my Savior.  Serving Him, no matter what comes and no matter the cost.  Just like Esther, I pray for the courage to enter the "king's" presence not knowing if I will have my head cut off or if he will extend his scepter to save my life.  As Paul said, "For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain."--Philippians 1:21

Standing on His promises,
Mrs. Bubba

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