Scripture

Esther 9:29-32

29 So Queen Esther, daughter of Abihail, along with Mordecai the Jew, wrote with full authority to confirm this second letter concerning Purim. 30 And Mordecai sent letters to all the Jews in the 127 provinces of Xerxes’ kingdom—words of goodwill and assurance— 31 to establish these days of Purim at their designated times, as Mordecai the Jew and Queen Esther had decreed for them, and as they had established for themselves and their descendants in regard to their times of fasting and lamentation. 32 Esther’s decree confirmed these regulations about Purim, and it was written down in the records.

Reflection

Has anyone ever accused you of having selective memory? In telling stories, do you tend to embellish some parts and leave out other parts? Anytime Papaw would tell us stories about his childhood, he would always get to a point of reminding us how he had to walk barefoot in the snow to get to school. In every re-telling, the weather became more severe. The distance from his house to school increased. Obstacles were introduced. When I hear talk of the good ‘ol days, I wonder how much of the talk is filtered through rose colored glasses or selective memory. 

It isn’t just the rejoicing and celebration God’s people are supposed to remember. The good news of salvation is cause to always remember and never forget but the whole story matters. Esther preparing her people through fasting and lamentation is equally significant and part of the story of salvation. We can’t take the victory and remove it from everything else….the power of King Xerxes, the vast kingdom, evil Haman, the courage of Mordecai and Esther, and the process of seeking God through fasting and prayer. The journey matters if we’re to fully understand everything the victory means!

We remember and celebrate Jesus’ birth, death, and resurrection more than other parts of his life. There is good reason for this but it doesn’t mean we can ignore what he did during his entire ministry that is inextricably connected to the significance of his birth, death, and resurrection! If we truly desire to be his disciples, we must pray as he prayed, heal as he healed, love as he loved, forgive as he forgives us, live as he lived. To share in the glory of his victory over sin and death, this is what we must do. We remember and follow every step, not just the first or the last. In what ways are we selectively following Jesus? Where are we trying to claim victory in Him without sacrificing for Him? 

Prayer

 

Prayer (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zp6aygmvzM4)

 

The Lord bless you

And keep you

Make His face shine upon you

And be gracious to you

The Lord turn His

Face toward you

And give you peace

 

May His favor be upon you

And a thousand generations

And your family and your children

And their children, and their children

 

May His presence go before you

And behind you, and beside you

All around you, and within you

He is with you, He is with you

 

In the morning, in the evening

In your coming, and your going

In your weeping, and rejoicing

He is for you, He is for you