notesbynora

Walking by Faith Alone

Impeccable timing…

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Sometimes in life, problems, struggles, trials rear their ugly head and we find ourselves in circumstances with no easy solution. I, myself, opened my eyes this morning to the reminder that such is in my life right now. Those mountains we just can’t find a way to climb; the valleys we just can’t figure out how to cross; the pain that just will not go away. If you are facing giants right now, as I am, we’re in good company. Many have before us and many will after us, it’s all in the process.

Esther is a young woman in the Bible who gives me great courage on many occasions of my life. Her story is one of intrigue. She is made the Queen of King Xerxes after the king finds displeasure in his wife Vashti. Esther is a Jew, living with her Uncle Mordecai, in a land where the Jewish people are not favored. Under the direction of her Uncle, Esther withholds the information to the King that she is a Jew.

Haman is a man hungry for power. He has worked his way through the ranks to earn the favor of the king and his hard work and diligence has landed him second in command under King Xerxes. The scary part about Haman is he hates Jews and with the elevation of his rank, he declares that the Jews are to be put to death – a decree unknown to King Xerxes. Mordecai gets word to Esther she must go to the king. She must use her royal position to save her people. The request is dangerous, for a queen cannot go before the king without an invitation. Disobedience is death.

Esther 4:15, “Then Esther sent this reply to Mordecai: Go gather together all the Jews who are in Susa, and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my maids will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish.”

On day three, she goes to the king and he happily receives her. She invites the king and Haman to lunch. During lunch the king asks her, “What do you want? For you can have half my kingdom if requested.”

Esther 5:7: “Esther replied, ‘My petition and my request is this: If the king regards me with favor and if it pleases the king to grant my petition and fulfill my request, let the king and Haman come tomorrow to the banquet I will prepare for them. Then I will answer the king’s question.”

While this titillating detail leaves us on the edge of our seats, I wonder why? Why the delay? Did she get cold feet? Did God speak to her heart, “Wait Esther!”? Did she sense something none of us can interpret from the reading? I don’t know. But in the middle of the climax…in the midst of the tension and anticipation…the racing pulse…the nearness to solution, God throws in a DELAY.

The answer is there but the timing is not right. God is never late and I can say with certainty, He is never early. Like a Southern lady, He knows just the right time to enter and the perfect moment to leave. Imagine though the Jewish people, fasting, praying, no food, no water, their lives hanging in the balance and Esther has requested another meal? You mean we have to wait another day?

Sometimes, we disrespectfully grab the lapel of God, and pull Him off His thrown, and with anger we shout, “God! Why are you doing this to ME!” As if we have a right, tiny specks of dust, flowers fading in the wind, little beings with NO clue as to the battles of spirituality that rage around us for our soul. Each one of us is desired by God to live in His kingdom for eternity. On the flip side, we are pawns, playing pieces, tokens for Satan to draw into the gates of Hell – we are victory pieces to throw in God’s face by the demon, the archenemy of good. And we question God’s motives, His intent, His solutions?

During the night King Xerxes is striken with insomnia and requests the royal reader to read the Book of Chronicles – accounts of the kingdom. Probably the ideal material to lull a king into dreamland, I would think. In listening to the Chronicles, Xerxes learns of an incident five years ago in which a man name Mordecai helped the king. Xerxes asks what was done for Mordecai and learns that Mordecai was never rewarded.

DELAY…Mordecai uncovered a plot to have the king assassinated by two men of Xerxes’ court. Don’t you know, Mordecai felt a bit put out that he was never rewarded? If he is like most of us, he has probably felt God did not give him validity for doing what was right; God did not give him recognition. “I give and give to that church and this is what I get from you God? I ALWAYS do what’s right and she does what’s WRONG but you recognize her God? I go on mission trips and this is my thank you! What about that time God that I stood up for you and how have you repaid me – are you going to let my enemy win!” Entitlement we scream as we stomp our feet and beat our fists upon the wall. “Who do you think you are?” we shout to God, the Creator of the Universe, the King of kings, and Lord of lords. What are you doing?

The next day, King Xerxes honors Mordecai in the streets, an honor 5 years overdue. Dinner is served by Queen Esther and her petition is brought before the king. When he learns that Haman has sentenced his wife and her people to death, is planning to hang Mordecai, the man who saved his life, Xerxes orders Haman immediately to be executed. God’s perfect timing.

I don’t know what larger than life issues you are facing right now but listen for the wisdom of God in your circumstances. As you walk, believe He is positioning your foot at just the right angle to lead you in the direction He deems right. Sometimes the solution seems so impossible, so out there, we allow abandonment to weigh on our spirits. People discourage us with their ranting and raving, “It will never work! I told you, you should have done this or that. You are doomed!” Remember Christ felt it too, just before He submitted to death questioning Why God had forsaken Him. God’s timing is impeccable. He hasn’t forgotten you. He isn’t surprised. He isn’t throwing His arms up in the air, wondering, “Oh no! What is going to happen to Nora!” He’s got this. What He needs us to do, is believe in Him for the right answer.

Written by Nora Hatchett Almazan

April 23, 2012 at 12:18 pm

One Response

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  1. God’s timing is perfect! Bless you Nora!

    legenia smith

    April 23, 2012 at 12:49 pm


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