“For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this” (Esther 4:14)?
Ever since God called me into ministry, prophets and ministers have prophesied, seemingly randomly, to me that I have the “Esther favor.” They would tell me things that lined up with everything God has told me since I was fresh out of college. So, many years later, as I am pushing 40, I’ve been wondering, “God, when is it my time?” When am I going to see the manifestation of the things spoken about my life? It is not easy for me to sit on the sidelines and watch others do the things that I am passionate about and long to do. It’s also been very frustrating for me because it seems like I’ve been in an uphill battle for the past 10 years. Nothing is turning out the way I planned or expected. It’s been a struggle.
However, last week God gave me some encouragement and allowed me to see a glimpse of how He views things. Recently, my friend’s husband died suddenly and unexpectedly. It was and still is a devastating blow because they have a young family and were very much in love with one another. Ironically, almost exactly three years prior to the date of her husband’s death, she was at my house, cooking food and consoling me after the death of my husband. Now, it was I who was trying to offer words of hope and encouragement to her. Well, one morning during the week, she texted me. She expressed her sadness and shock about the entire situation. And as I texted her back trying to help her make some sense of everything, the Lord spoke to me and said, “Lauren, this is your Esther moment. This is what I called you to do.” In that moment, many things made sense. It made sense to me why the Lord allowed me to go through so much pain and devastation with the loss of my husband and other things that have happened in my life. One reason was so I could help my friend and someone else through their pain and devastation.
“Simon, Simon, satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers” Luke 22:31-32 (NIV).
As I tried to help my friend make it through her pain and devastation, there were no crowds, no pulpit, no applause, no media, no mass recognition, but God had called me “for such a time as this” for that moment. Everything that I’ve gone through led me to that moment of one-on-one ministry. It was my Esther moment, and there will be more of these opportunities if I avail myself to the Holy Spirit. I was waiting for a large moment in the spotlight, but God had other plans in mind. His ways and thoughts are higher than ours after all.
I believe that we have these “Esther moments” all of the time, but we miss them because we’re so worldly minded. We think that if we’re not serving on some major platform then we believe our ministry has no impact and is not great. However, God tries to teach us every day that it’s these seemingly small moments of ministry, out of public view that have great eternal consequences and yield a mighty harvest for the Kingdom of God.
What’s your Esther moment? Have you missed opportunities to do impactful ministry because they seemed insignificant?
This is one of my favorite songs. The lyrics talk about how a man went about his life thinking his efforts in ministry went unnoticed and were not as impactful as he wanted them to be. But, when he went to heaven, the Lord showed him all of the faces of the ones his obedience and ministry impacted. I think about this song often when I feel like I’m not making any difference in the Kingdom of God. I hope it encourages you. Don’t miss your Esther moment.