When The World Needs A Hero!

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Purim begins tonight at sundown.  It is a really delightful holiday full of family fun!  There’ll be costuming and snacking on delicious cookies.  We’ll act out the book of Esther a’la vaudeville complete with boooooos and hisses for the villains, and cheers for the hero!  And this story has a hero, named Esther!  A woman who saved the day, rescued a nation, conquered the enemy and won the heart of a king!  This is the kind of girl-power story you want to tell your daughters!  In our world today we need some good girl power stories.

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Lessons from the book of Esther our daughters should know:

1. As women, we are the target of the enemy.

Of course this has been true ever since God cursed the serpent in the garden with the Seed of a Woman coming to crush his head.  Enmity (the fiercest hostility!) has been between women and the enemy ever since!  The story of Esther begins with the Persian King partying it up with his friends.  When the King was pretty well schnockered he calls for his wife, Vashti, to come and parade her beauty before his drunken homies.  Some scholars say that what this means is that he wanted her front, center and naked.  She refused.  And so her part of the story ends with her banishment.

This world is not doing any favors for women.  There will be plenty of opportunities for us to bow to popular culture, to unveil our innocence (of either body, soul or spirit), to compromise.  But, each of those opportunities is also an opportunity to stand our ground–even if we face consequences for doing so!

 2. Men are not the enemy.

Esther, an orphan, was brought up by her cousin, Mordecai.  The Bible says that he raised her as his own daughter.  Clearly they had a close relationship because when Esther was taken to the palace Mordecai spent his days pacing in front of the women’s quarters to keep tabs on her welfare.  He also advised her on how to stay safe in the hazardous conditions of the palace.  He was protective.  He was wise.  God wisely placed a strong man in Esther’s life.  God knew she’d need him and he would need her.

Likewise God has placed men and women together in the church, in the home, in the marketplace.  We need one another.

3. The choice to be the hero of our story is our own.

Things go south in Esther’s palace life really quickly.  She was so favored the king made a national holiday to celebrate her.  But, then a crisis moment.  An evil plot to annihilate all her people.  Mordecai tells her of the plot.  At first Esther is hesitant to rush right into the king and tell him what-for.  Understandably so.  After all, everyone had heard the story of Vashti.  Mordecai tells her, “Do not think in your heart that you will escape in the king’s palace any more than all the other Jews.  For if you remain completely silent at this time, deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish.  Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”

Esther chooses to be the hero.  We can also choose.  We might not be facing a volatile king and a blood thirsty henchman set on ethnic cleansing.  But, we do face an enemy who wants our children to bow to the powers of culture, greed, immorality, etc.  We do face the trials of life–finances, marriage, death, illness, etc.  We do face temptations and discouragement in our own hearts.  We can choose to be a victim.  We can choose to sit back and wait for someone else to rescue us or for someone else to take action.  Or we can choose to rise up–for such a time as this!

4. Our femininity is a blessing, not a liability.

When Esther decides to take action she does so as a woman.  She could have stormed the castle, rushed right into the king, made demands, and accused Haman to his face.  But, she doesn’t.  Instead, she sets her people fasting on her behalf.  When the moment is right she goes into the king’s court, finds favor in his sight and invites him to a banquet.  It’s the ultimate “the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach” moment.  She again finds favor.  And invites them to feast with her again.  She prepares a lovely banquet.  She disarms the angsty Haman and the ambivalent king with the power of her feminine wiles (used in the best possible sense).  When the conditions were perfect, she asks for the life of herself and her people.

Femininity is almost a bad word these days, conjuring up images of mousy girls, oppressed and without a voice.  But that is a distortion of our feminine genius.  True femininity is as powerful as it is beautiful.  Esther was known for her beauty and grace.  She should also be marked for her wisdom, which is a feminine virtue.

“Wisdom calls aloud outside; She raises her voice in the open squares. She cries out in the chief concourses, At the openings of the gates in the city, She speaks her words…” Proverbs 1:20-21

In the end, Esther not only triumphs over those who would destroy her and saves the lives of her people, she also is given Haman’s household and authority.  Suddenly she is co-reigning with the king! “Then Queen Esther, the daughter of Abihail, with Mordecai the Jew, wrote with full authority…”  Esther 10:29  She promotes and blesses Mordecai, hangs Haman’s sons, and somehow creates a holiday out of it all where people now send each other presents and feast with gladness!

May God’s women everywhere know their identity and be not afraid to rise up, for such a time as this!  May they pass along these things to their daughters and grand-daughters!  When the world needs a hero, may they find God’s women ready!

Linked to Worth Revisit!


  1. What a great post, Daja! I agree femininity is almost a bad word these days…but…I believe there is a rising of the Esther Generation. Women who are empowered with their feminine genius!! May we see a company of women who choose to be heroes in our time!!!

    • I can say I have the honor and privalage to know and be in the presence of 2 Hero’s today!
      Daja and Kristina!
      You both are leading the way, by example, with grace, faith and wisdom!

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