Esther Who Stepped Up

 

beautiful and brave estherWelcome to week 6 of Women in the Bible: Beautiful and Brave the series! Each week for 10 weeks on Whimsical Wednesday, we are studying the most beautiful and brave women in the Bible. At the end of this post, you will find the prior articles in the series. Be sure to check them out!

This week we are featuring “Esther who stepped up.” To begin, let’s take a peek at some interesting facts about the book of Esther:

  • The book of Esther is one of two books in the Bible named after women in the Bible; the other is Ruth.
  • The word “God” is never mentioned in the entire book of Esther.
  • The short and to-the-point book is only 10 chapters long.
  • Esther’s original name was Hadasseh, which means “myrtle.” The name “Esther” means “star.” I think we can safely agree that her name change was a good thing.

The historical time period of Esther takes place during the reign of the Medes and Persians. Esther is an orphan being raised by her uncle, Mordecai. We don’t know the reason Esther’s parents are no longer living, but the Bible is clear that Esther is very beautiful.

Word on the street quickly passes that the king is looking for a new queen and Esther is taken to stay at the house of concubines in the palace.  I believe that one little fact spelled out to us about Esther in chapter 2 verse 15 is a description of her actions that we can’t pass over lightly.

Now when the turn of Esther, the daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai, who had taken her for his daughter, was come to go in unto the king, she required nothing but what Hegai the king’s chamberlain, the keeper of the women, appointed. And Esther obtained favour in the sight of all them that looked upon her.

Esther the little orphan girl was grateful for everything she was given and she didn’t ask for a different dress or better shoes or more jewelry. She simply accepted what she was issued and everyone who saw her loved her.

A grateful heart is the most revealing beauty mark.

Esther takes her turn to go before the king after 12 months of living in the house of concubines and the king loves Esther. So much so, that he makes her the queen.

The most familiar piece of Esther’s story is the fact that she risked her own life to save her people by going before the king without invitation.If the king did not hold out his scepter to her in favor, then she would immediately be killed. Esther must have been completely afraid in this pivotal moment of risk, but her uncle’s advice no doubt echoed in her mind: “For such a time as this.”

Courage chooses to trust in God… AND his timing.

 

So here is the profile of Queen Esther, beautiful and brave.

  • Name: Esther (Hadasseh)
  • Occupation: Queen
  • Family background: orphan and niece to Mordecai
  • Daily life: royal responsibilities
  • Emotional baggage: none of which we are aware
  • Weaknesses: none outlined
  • Beauty secrets: beautifully undemanding and graciously submissive to authority
  • Acts of bravery: risked her life at a pivotal moment for the sake of her countrymen

Wouldn’t it be fun to have tea with Queen Esther?

Each week I want to highlight one of the posts linked up in the previous week. This week, my friend, Mary’s post at Passage Through Grace was the perfect linkup to highlight. In light of what we’ve learned about Esther today, check out what Mary says about bravery and courage.

new whimsical wed

Bloggers, I’m thrilled to have your 100% Christian encouragement  linkups this Whimsical Wednesday. If you have chosen to participate in the Women in the Bible series and link up your post, then I plan to choose and highlight one of your posts here on the blog next week.

Rachel

Original Post: Women in the Bible: 5 of the most beautiful and brave

Introductory Post: Women in the Bible: Beautiful and Brave series

Week 1: Sarah Who Remembered God’s Promise

Week 2: Deborah Who Declared God’s Truth

Week 3: Hannah Who Poured Out Her Soul

Week 4: Ruth Who Dedicated Herself

Week 5: Mary Who Anointed the Lord

Week 6: Esther Who Stepped Up



Bible Reading Plans for Proverbs

Have you ever asked yourself “How does God really work in our lives?” One of the ways I’m confident of his work is when he places an idea in front of me multiple times. I guess I’m a tad (ok, extremely) hard-headed and I need more than once to understand that this thought is from him and I need to act on it. So I’m catching on. Maybe you too?

Sunday afternoon at church, I heard that one of the teachers was encouraging her age group to read the book of Proverbs. She plans to have a great lunch party for the kids who follow through. I love this idea because my kids haven’t read the entire book of Proverbs to my knowledge. And while I offer Bible reading plans for each of the Gospels, I haven’t created any printable Bible reading plans for any books in the Old Testament.

When I was in college, I began reading a chapter of Proverbs each day and 5 Psalms each day. Following this path will take you through both books in one month. But as one of our readers pointed out yesterday, it can be a bit much to really think and process that much reading in a day. This reader is following the plan that I’ve done as well, reading one chapter of Proverbs a day. Honestly, I think even that much can be a little much if you want to study and think on the verses.

So today, for all the reasons above, I’m excited to offer you some Bible reading plans for Proverbs. Here are the ideas recapped:

1. Read 1 chapter in Proverbs and 5 Psalms a day to finish both books in one month.

2. Read 1 chapter in Proverbs daily to read the entire book in one month.

3. Use this brand new Bible reading plan for Proverbs to read the entire book of Proverbs in two months.

Using a printable check-off sheet is a great idea for a few reasons:

1. You get to watch your progress unfold.

2. You can be creative and color or stamp the boxes as you go. You could even create a color coding system and mark your favorite chapters.

3. You can finish more quickly than the time allotted if you find yourself with extra reading time.

You can download the form here or click on the graphic below.

proverbs bible reading

 

Have a terrific Tuesday and I’ll see you tomorrow!

Rachel

You Are A Child of the Most High God and Bible Reading Challenge Check-In

Hey there! Monday already? Where does the week go? By now, you know what Monday means- it’s time to check in for the Bible reading challenge. Just in case you are having any struggles to read the Bible each day (and sometimes, it is very challenging, I’ll admit!), then I wanted to encourage you today.

You are a child of the most high God.

There is only one of you in the whole wide world,

You are a unique creation.

And only you can do the job God has for you.

His plan for you is far greater than anything you can imagine.

His love for you exceeds your comprehension.

His strength is more than enough for your weakness.

Through him, you can do anything.

Anything?

Yes, anything he gives you to do.

There is nothing that he cannot handle;

Your burdens are his.

So take them to him and leave them there,

All the while recognizing that

You are a child of the most high God.

you are a child of the most high god

I pray this reminder floods your heart and fills your soul today.

How’s your Bible reading going? I’d love to read about it! Let me know how you’re doing in the comments and I’ll see you tomorrow!

Rachel