Beauty for Ashes
For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place; but thou and thy father’s house shall be destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this? Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish.Esther 4:14-16
Now it came to pass on the third day, that Esther put on her royal apparel, and stood in the inner court of the king’s house, over against the king’s house: and the king sat upon his royal throne in the royal house, over against the gate of the house.Esther 5:1
Then Esther the queen answered and said, If I have found favour in thy sight, O king, and if it please the king, let my life be given me at my petition, and my people at my request.Esther 7:3
Esther, a young Jewish girl, was taken to the king’s palace to become one of his wives. But, through a series of events, she found herself in a position to save her people from destruction.
Esther’s story is one of courage, faith, and obedience. She could have easily kept quiet and lived a comfortable life in the palace, but instead, she risked everything to save her people. In the same way, God may be calling us to step out in faith and courage to make a difference in the lives of those around us.
In Isaiah 61:3, it says, “To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.” This verse reminds us that even in the darkest of situations, God can bring beauty from ashes.
Esther’s story is also one of providence. God orchestrated the events in her life to put her in the position to save her people. In Esther 4:14, Mordecai tells Esther, “And who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” This same truth applies to us today. We may not always understand why we are going through certain situations, but we can trust that God has a plan and a purpose for our lives.
Sometimes, it may seem like our lives are in ashes. We may be going through a difficult situation, or we may have made mistakes that we feel are unforgivable. But, just like Esther, God can bring beauty from our ashes. We can turn to Him in faith and trust that He will use our experiences for His glory.
I want to share a story of a woman named Sarah. Sarah had a difficult childhood and grew up with very little support or encouragement from her family. She struggled with feelings of worthlessness and turned to drugs to cope. Her addiction spiraled out of control, and she found herself in a hopeless situation.
But, through the love and grace of God and time, Sarah was able to turn her life around. She found a community of people who loved and supported her, and she began to see that she was not defined by her past mistakes.
Just like Sarah, God can bring beauty from the ashes of our lives. No matter what mistakes we have made or what difficulties we may be facing, we can trust that God has a plan and a purpose for our lives. Even when you may be facing the darkest moments of our lives, you’re reading this today not by chance but by choice with faith and trust that He will bring you through.
Esther’s story reminds us that God can bring beauty from ashes. We can trust Him with our lives, even when we don’t understand what He is doing. Let us have faith, courage, and obedience to step out and make a difference in the lives of those around us.