“On the third day Esther put on her royal robes and stood in the inner court of the palace, in front of the king’s hall. The king was sitting on his royal throne in the hall, facing the entrance. When he saw Queen Esther standing in the court, he was pleased with her and held out to her the gold scepter that was in his hand. So Esther approached and touched the tip of the scepter. Then the king asked, “What is it, Queen Esther? What is your request? Even up to half the kingdom, it will be given you.” [Esther 5:1-3 NIV]
The backstory to this scripture is found in Esther 4:11 where it says “All the king’s officials and the people of the royal provinces know that for any man or woman who approaches the king in the inner court without being summoned the king has but one law: that they be put to death unless the king extends the gold scepter to them and spares their lives.” Esther was breaking the law and putting her life on the line in order to save the Jewish people. She was fully willing to lose her life for her people but also fully expectant that God would give her favor with the king.
In what area of your life do you need to live more like Esther? Esther wasn’t in denial. She was fully aware that going before the king could cost her life. But she believed in the promise of God’s favor and protection so much more that she was willing to do it anyway. It takes real courage to face circumstances in our lives that seem to have no good possible outcome. It takes faith to actually step towards them. Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” When you can’t see any way to victory on your own, faith says God can make a way for you.
My sophomore year of college was marked by depression. Deep depression. To the point that I wouldn’t want to get out of bed most mornings because I couldn’t see any purpose in it. I tried and tried to pull myself out of it, but it’s impossible to rescue yourself if you’re stuck in the bottom of a pit. I sought all these different things for hope. Other people, school, internships, the list went on. But it wasn’t until God sent me to Maine for a summer, an opportunity I had no idea even existed, that He delivered me from depression and showed me how deeply He loved me.
During my sophomore year, there were some really gut-wrenching days that left me feeling hopeless. But the one thing I could always find the strength to do was to pray and read my Bible. Honestly, I was just hoping God would speak something to me. Anything. I can’t point to a single day that year that God broke in and intervened in my life. Like Esther, I couldn’t see any way out of where I was at, but I went before the king anyways. There was a conviction inside of me that knew God was my only way out.
When you look at your life what are the things that only God can provide a way out from? It could be depression, anxiety, hopelessness, addiction. I can go ahead and tell you that you won’t find the solution in anything apart from God. Go to Him. Go to Him again. Go to Him again and again and again. As many times as it takes, because I promise you that He’s listening. And you can be confident in His favor and protection on your life is stronger than the impossibility in front of you.
God, we want to boldly approach You like Esther boldly approached the king. Even when we can’t see a way out, we still want to come to You. Please give me a fresh revelation of how approachable You are. Please give me an awareness of the ways that You fight for me and love me. I want to receive Your love and favor, Jesus. You are stronger than my circumstances. Amen.