by Xylia Sparks-Davis on 10/25/12
Esther is only one of two women who have a book of the bible named after her. Orphaned and raised by extended family, she is plucked from obscurity to become queen of one of the most powerful empires in the world. Esther’s story brings to mind the classic rags to riches tale. However, her story has a twist. Women of God are not randomly moved. We live lives of divine purpose. God strategically moves a woman of God to be in the right spot at the perfect time to effect change for His Kingdom. Esther was moved from the outskirts to the center of national influence to be an agent of divine protection.
The agent sent to cause havoc in your life sometimes comes in a benign or even and appealing package. Esther’s nemesis was Haman, a man who rose in the political ranks to become chief advisor to her husband, Xerxes. Haman had the look. He fit in with the right connections, fine clothes, on trend hair coming off the pages of GQ. He came across as trustworthy and made himself indispensable all while carrying sinister motives. Was power Haman’s goal? No, it was destroying the people of God.
Haman was so trusted that Xerxes did not even ask questions when Haman recommended that an entire people be wiped out for being out of step with mainstream Persian life. They think differently. They worship different gods. They are causing national disturbance. They must go. Xerxes did not have any details. Beware of leaders with vague solutions to serious problems. Xerxes didn’t know which group he had just scheduled for execution – all because he had unwavering trust in a man who could not be trusted.
Since the palace was Esther’s home and the seat of governmental power, Haman walked in and out of her home on a regular basis. A person and grin in your face and seek to take your life and you can be completely in the dark. Esther was in the dark until the death edict was read to her. Can’t you just feel the enormity of this weighting upon her shoulders? Her future and future of every Jew in the empire was in the balance. I believe that Esther in that moment she remembered the words of the prophet, “If my people who are called by my name shall humble themselves and pray…” She knew what must be done. Only a move of God could turn the tide. It was time to call a fast.
Some things can only be remedied by prayer and fasting. When we seek God things change, answers are given, lives are transformed. I don’t know what scriptures recited to herself and to her maids as she prayed and encouraged those around her that God would indeed fight this battle. Maybe she quoted Psalm 23 for she was in the shadow of death but evil should not be feared. Maybe she remembered Isaiah 59:16-18:
And he [GOD] saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore his arm brought salvation unto him; and his righteousness, it sustained him. 17 For he put on righteousness as a breastplate, and an helmet of salvation upon his head; and he put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, and was clad with zeal as a cloak. 18 According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay, fury to his adversaries, recompence to his enemies; to the islands he will repay recompence.
Just as God dressed in His garments of war to bring salvation in Isaiah, Esther dressed for battle. Empowered by being in the will of God she executed the weapons of grace and hospitality to soften the heart of Xerxes to hear the request of her people. The door was opened and Haman was exposed for what he truly was – a vindictive destroyer. He was executed on very gallows he had constructed to kill a child of God. The prayers of the righteous saved a people.
Haman was more than just a man, but a spirit from the enemy who seeks to destroy in every generation. In the 20th century, he introduced himself as the leader of the Nazi party. Hitler gained political power in order to decimate and destroy millions.
In each generation, the Lord calls for someone to stand in the gap. In one generation, he called Esther. In the 20th century, he called Oscar Schindler. This time the Lord is calling you. It is time for a nation of Esthers to rise up and pray. The spirit of Haman is loose in the land once again. He is seeking to devour God’s chosen ones through emotional imbalance, economic despair, religious and political oppression. You have been placed right where you are – in your home, on your job, in your class- in order to bring glory to God and intercede for those who think they have no hope.
If Haman is active in your life and seeking to devour your purpose, please allow me to intercede on your behalf right now. “ May the Haman in your life be routed. May he fall into trap he has set for you. May his plans for your demise come to pass in his life. May a hedge of protection encircle your life on the ones you love. May your paths be made straight. Your purpose from God will not be overset by the evil one but will be fulfilled in the fullness of God’s timing.”
Until next time,