Kingdom Women: Queen Esther by Gina Butz
Throughout the this year I will post an ongoing series on Kingdom Women—women God has used and is using in His great Kingdom endeavor. We will meet these women in God’s Word, in the early church, in the dark ages, in the past great missionary efforts and among today’s true followers of Jesus. Gina shares what she has learned from Queen Esther.
I never planned to be here.
I promised myself that if we had to work at our global headquarters in Orlando someday, it wouldn’t be before I was 40. I had things to do elsewhere.
I was 39 when we moved.A year and a half in, I’m still not clear on my role. I’ve had opportunities here and there to have some influence, and for that I’m grateful. Certainly my roles as wife and mom have been important, as I’ve helped them navigate new jobs and schools and the reality of living in America. But at times I’m still tempted to wonder, “God, why have you brought me here?”
I think Esther could relate. Plucked from her home and dropped into a harem, she had to wonder why. She had to question what God was doing. So much of her life was beyond her control. She didn’t choose her beauty. She didn’t choose the palace. She didn’t choose to be Hebrew. She didn’t choose to be queen. I don’t suppose it was the situation she planned for herself. Given that her predecessor was executed simply for refusing to appear immodest before the king and his peers, she lived with a heightened sense of danger I can’t imagine. One false move and she could be gone.
Then, one false move seemed almost inevitable, as the king decreed that the Hebrew people would be destroyed. If I were she, I’d want to run right back where I came from.But, as her relative Mordecai reminded her, “who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” (Esther 4:14)
For such a time as this. Esther was in the right place at the right time, not of her own choosing, but of God’s. Mordecai made it clear that if she didn't act, salvation for the Hebrews would come from somewhere else. But she had an opportunity to save a kingdom.
So she did. She used the position God put her in for His glory. She made the most of it. And in so doing she saved her people.
Do I look at my life that way? As I look around, I don’t see kingdoms needing salvation. Or do I? Maybe it’s not the same scale, but who knows what change God wants to bring about in His kingdom through my life? If I don’t choose to step out in faith, He will use someone else. But God has reasons for me being here, now. I want to have an attitude of readiness and expectation. I could have an opportunity to influence the kingdom.
This is what Esther shows me it means to be kingdom women–-women who are ready, available, expectant, who believe that whatever situation we are in is God-ordained and useful for his purposes. Let us be women for such a time as this.
What about you? What “such a time as this” has God had for you?
Painting by English Victorian-era painter Edward Armitage
Gina and her husband, Erik, have served with Cru for more than 15 years, 13 of which were spent overseas. They recently returned to the U.S. with their two kids, and serve now with Global Leadership. Gina enjoys writing, speaking, and coaching other women, particularly in issues surrounding transition and living wholeheartedly. You will love her blog, The View from Here. Friend her on Facebook and follow her on Twitter @ginabrennabutz.