Daily Gratitude Year 6- Day 101: Today, I am grateful we were born for a purpose.
We live life in the driver's seat. We can see what is before us, what is behind us, and even the view from left to right... but we don't see the big picture. How can we begin to understand a God who is attending not just our moments, but the big picture in the palm of his hand.
On this day in 1970, Apollo 13 was launched. The story was made famous in the Tom Hanks movie. The nation and world huddled around their television sets watching and praying for the three American astronauts on board. Their mission of a lifetime was looking as if it would be their last mission.
We can credit man and science. Or, we can look at the miracle of all the right people being on the team that would help bring them home. The right people, with the right knowledge, at the right place and time. Coincidence or hand of God? Each man and woman at NASA and the astronauts on board went into the situation with unique experiences that contributed to the solution that would eventually bring the crew home.
We get caught up in destinations and moments. Our lives are stories that God longs for us to ask His assistance in writing. We can choose to do it on our own, or we can ask Him to be with us on the journey. Some of the most comforting scriptures are the ones that say, "I am with you." Immanuel means "God with us".
Queen Esther was an orphan girl, taken in by her uncle Mordecai when she lost her parents. Surely the grief was overwhelming. We don't know that part of her story. We do know is that the tragedy and loss were only a chapter. God had so much more ahead for Esther.
Imagine the courage it took to go before your King and husband to explain that you were not exactly what he believed you to be? Esther revealing her Jewish heritage could have meant her death, but it was the only way to save her people. Her courage in her youth... and Mordecai's actions as a prayer warrior... were bold and beautiful. They invited God to help write the story. This passage is an all time favorite of mine:
"If you keep quiet at a time like this, deliverance and relief for the Jews will arise from some other place, but you and your relatives will die. Who knows if perhaps you were made queen for just such a time as this?” -Esther 4:14
Nothing in Esther's lifetime was by accident. Her tragedy placed her uniquely in a position that would allow her to serve God with her best. She was something special and the King was drawn to her. Her strength, born of tough times, meant she knew who she was and to whom she belonged. She was King Xerxes queen, but she was a daughter of the One True King.
Esther followed the Spirit's lead and did what she knew she had to do. Her people were spared a genocide. She was no little orphan girl. She was a daughter of the Master of the Universe. Only He could place her in that perfect position to save her people. Was she fearless? I can't say. I do know that she trusted a God with a big picture plan and she recognized her purpose when it was revealed. What a girl!
God's timing is never by accident. The Apollo 13 crew made it home in April of 1970... and Esther was the orphan girl who became the queen who saved a nation in Old Testament times. Then and now, He has a purpose for each of us. It may not be as grand as their stories, but none of us knows the ripples into eternity that faithful service can generate.
"Perhaps you were made... for just such a time as this?”
I cannot revisit Esther's story without this video and song from Mandisa. It is from Songs Inspired by "The Story". My sweet Miles Wyse-Fisher calls this "The Violin Song".
(Love you Miles and Wyse-Fisher Family ... God has called you for a purpose through adoption and I know you felt it in this song before you even understood the meaning.)
Today, I am grateful we were born for a purpose.