A Long Line of Powerful Women
Lucinda Secrest McDowell
For the Kingdom of God is not just a lot of talk; it is living by God’s power. —1 Corinthians 4:20
She had no idea she had any power. All she thought she had was beauty. And a big secret.
Esther was a Jewish orphan living in Persia with her cousin Mordecai. The Bible tells us she was so beautiful that when King Xerxes was looking for a new queen, “she won his favor and approval” (Esther 2:17).
So he put a crown on it.
Though she’d won the love of Xerxes and earned the trust of her court attendants, Esther neglected to tell her new husband she was Jewish. After all, her people were in danger of annihilation due to the vengeance of Xerxes’s right-hand man, Haman.
Since Queen Esther was firmly established in the palace, Mordecai begged her to intervene with the king and save the Jews from Haman’s attacks. “Who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?” (Esther 4:14).
It was time for an important choice to be made and this queen knew her only power resided in God. So Esther’s immediate response was to ask the Jews to fast and pray with her, “When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish” (v.16).
When was the last time you were asked to do something for which you felt unprepared? Did you recoil in fear or go forth in Holy Spirit power?
God immediately answered Esther’s prayers—granting strength and courage to face her king and gain his favor even though she entered his presence unbidden, an act normally punishable by death. She used her audience with the king to reveal Haman’s true plan against the Jews and entreated Xerxes to save her people with a royal edict. He not only gave her what she asked, but he punished Haman’s deceit by hanging, and he elevated Mordecai to rule his household.
Most importantly, God’s people were saved, and to this day the Jews celebrate Esther’s role through the annual feast of Purim. “In every province and in every city to which the edict of the king came, there was joy and gladness among the Jews, with feasting and celebrating” (Esther 8:17).
God uses women to help bring about His kingdom through “living by God’s power.” This is why we were created.
In the biblical account of creation (Genesis 2), after God created man, Scripture records, “But still there was no helper just right for him” (v. 20). The original Hebrew language used for the word helper is ezer, which can either mean “strong helper,” as God is a strong helper, or “strong power.”
In the book Reclaiming Eve, the authors suggest the original meaning of this verse might be, “To end the loneliness of the single human, I will make another strong power, corresponding to it, facing it, equal to it. And the humans will be both male and female.”
That’s what you are, sister, a strong power!
“For not only has God identified you as his image-bearer, but he also chose back in the garden of Eden to identify you as a strong power. Nowhere in these two primary keys that unlock your identity do we find a hint of female inferiority or a whiff of male superiority. Instead, we find the beauty of an interdependent relationship formed by a God of relationship.” (Suzanne Burden, Carla Sundberg, and Jamie Wright, Reclaiming Eve)
Did you know that we come from a long line of strong women? Like Esther, let us go forth for such a time as this…
under the mercy, Lucinda
“Helping You Choose a Life of Serenity and Strength”
Today’s blog is excerpted from my newest book “Life-Giving Choices ~ 60 Days to What Matters Most” is a devotional journal which can help any woman make the most important choices every day. Coming out this Fall from the good folks at New Hope Publishers, it is available now for pre-order HERE.
©2019 Lucinda Secrest McDowell www.EncouragingWords.net
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