“Vashti has dishonored the king! Another queen will be chosen!” The cry rang though the streets of Persia from one shocked pair of lips to another as Esther ran from her humble hut to see what caused the uproar. Before she could even think, a soldier roughly grabbed her by her petite shoulders and shoved her toward a wagon filled with a dozen other sobbing girls. Confused, she climbed into the wagon headed for the palace. As a child, Esther never would have guessed that one day, she would go before the king of Persia, risking her life to save her people. However, as a very young woman, she and many other young girls received a summons from the palace to spend perhaps their whole lives away from their families and all they had ever known. Only the most beautiful and gracious woman who went before the king would spend the rest of her life as the queen of Persia. The amazing story of Esther is one of inspiring courage, determination, and loyalty to her people and her God.|
|Esther, going before King Xerxes l. (Wikipedia)|
After Esther and her companions were brought to the palace, they began a twelve month long beautification process. When Esther’s time to go before the king came, he found favor with her innocent demeanor, humble, graceful appearance and made her the queen. Not long after Esther became queen, a plot devised by the king’s right hand man, Haman, to have all the Jews in the kingdom killed, surfaced. A Jew herself, horrified Esther immediately began fasting, praying, and preparing to enter the king’s court, fully knowing that to go before the king without specific permission from himself, would assuredly mean death. Three long days later, Esther entered the court of the king, where she knelt humbly before his throne and invited the king to a banquet the next day. The king, surprised but pleased, extended his scepter towards her, a symbol of acceptance, and gladly accepted her invitation. After the banquet, she invited him and Haman to another banquet the day after that. During the next banquet, through her tears, she explained that she and her people were to be put to death. The enraged king immediately decreed that the Jews should be allowed to defend themselves and that the wicked Haman be put to death.
|Esther's Banquet for King Xerxes l and Haman (Wikipedia)|
Esther is a true hero because of her undying courage and loyalty to her people. She didn’t have to step forward and save the Jews. No one except for her uncle knew she was Jewish, but she still put her life on the line to save them. Not only was she courageous, but faithful to her God amid the constant loneliness of living in the Persian palace as the wife of a pagan king. Reading about Esther is a constant encouragement to those who are going through trying times, or are separated from their homes. It reminds them to remain courageous and loyal to their faith in everything they do.