Esther. Orphaned at a young age and raised by her cousin Mordecai. Esther and her uncle were living in Persia. Though Cyrus gave permission to the Jews to return to Judah, many remained in their places of exile. Esther and the Jews living in Persia were far from their homeland but remained true to their heritage.
By this time in Esther’s story she was queen of Persia by marriage to King Ahasuerus. Her uncle learned Haman, the king’s top official, planned to kill Jews in the land.
Read Esther 4:1-16
- What was Esther’s first response to her cousin’s news?
- What did she call the Jews to do as she prepared to enter the king’s presence without his request?
- What risk was Esther willing to take?
Esther’s preparation to enter the king’s presence was risky. She faced certain death without his mercy. Sometimes we find ourselves feeling much like Esther when we consider entering God’s presence through prayer. We wonder if all our “not enough” might cause the King to respond with judgement.
- What keeps you from entering God’s presence through prayer?
- Is there something about you that would bring God’s judgement? Some reason to cause Him to withhold His grace and mercy from you?
Ask God to show you how to prepare to enter His presence. Is God calling you to fast and pray in some specific way?