Scripture

Esther 5:9-14

9 Haman went out that day happy and in high spirits. But when he saw Mordecai at the king’s gate and observed that he neither rose nor showed fear in his presence, he was filled with rage against Mordecai. 10 Nevertheless, Haman restrained himself and went home.

Calling together his friends and Zeresh, his wife, 11 Haman boasted to them about his vast wealth, his many sons, and all the ways the king had honored him and how he had elevated him above the other nobles and officials. 12 “And that’s not all,” Haman added. “I’m the only person Queen Esther invited to accompany the king to the banquet she gave. And she has invited me along with the king tomorrow. 13 But all this gives me no satisfaction as long as I see that Jew Mordecai sitting at the king’s gate.”

14 His wife Zeresh and all his friends said to him, “Have a pole set up, reaching to a height of fifty cubits, and ask the king in the morning to have Mordecai impaled on it. Then go with the king to the banquet and enjoy yourself.” This suggestion delighted Haman, and he had the pole set up.

Reflection

Maybe it’s the rain hitting my window as I write this but, again, I’m reminded of the rain and dark clouds that keep falling and hovering around God’s people. All the recognition and pageantry in the world isn’t enough to keep Haman’s mind off of his hatred for men and women made in the image of God. At least for now, a dark cloud looms. Andrew Peterson writes about the rain falling in his life. He’s a singer-songwriter-author who is also a follower of Jesus. In a song called, “The Rain Keeps Falling,” ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fn8cbI9jFGc) he writes:

I tried to be brave but I hid in the dark

I sat in that cave and I prayed for a spark

To light up all the pain that remained in my heart

And the rain kept falling

Down on the roof of the church where I cried

I could hear all the laughter and love and I tried

To get up and get out but a part of me died

And the rain kept falling down

Well I'm scared if I open myself to be known

I'll be seen and despised and be left all alone

So I'm stuck in this tomb and you won't move the stone

And the rain keeps falling

Somewhere the sun is a light in the sky

But I'm dying in North Carolina and I

Can't believe there's an end to this season of night

And the rain keeps falling down

Falling down

Falling down

There's a woman at home and she's praying for a light

My children are there and they love me in spite

Of the shadow I know that they see in my eyes

And the rain keeps falling

I'm so tired of this game, of these songs, of the road

I'm already ashamed of the line I just wrote

But it's true and it feels like I can't sing a note

And the rain keeps falling down

Falling down

Falling down

Peace, be still

Peace, be still

My daughter and I put the seeds in the dirt

And every day now we've been watching the earth

For a sign that this death will give way to a birth

And the rain keeps falling

Down on the soil where the sorrow is laid

And the secret of life is igniting the grave

And I'm dying to live but I'm learning to wait

And the rain is falling

Peace, be still

Peace, be still

I just want to be new again

(Peace, be still)

I just want to be closer to You again

(Peace, be still)

Lord, I can't find the song

I'm so tired and I'm always so wrong

(Peace, be still)

Help me be brave tonight

Jesus, please help me out of this cave tonight

(Peace, be still)

I've been calling and calling

This rain just keeps falling

(Peace, be still)

I've been calling and calling

But this rain just keeps falling and falling

(Peace, be still)

Is it You

Is it You

(Peace, be still)

Is it true

Is it You

(Peace, peace) 

I love the honesty of this song. He’s writing about how hard this season of his life is and God’s response as he hears our cries and frustrations and restlessness is to say, “Peace, be still.” Even when dark clouds loom and our lives seem to be unraveling, God gives us his peace. He sees us in our time of need and saves us. Do you feel like the rain keeps falling? Like you can’t catch a break? Cry out to God and he will hear you. Rescue is coming.  

Prayer

Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions. Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. Then I will teach transgressors your ways, so that sinners will turn back to you. Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God, you who are God my Savior, and my tongue will sing of your righteousness. Open my lips, Lord, and my mouth will declare your praise. You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise (from Psalm 51).