Archive for the ‘Week 2’ Category

WEEK TWO, Day 1
May 18, 2009

WHAT’S THE ANSWER?
Page 35.  King Xerxes “remembered” Vashti.   Amplified Bible says “earnestly rmembered” like, maybe he missed her, or regretted his harshness towards her.

WHAT’S THE POINT?
P. 36, When someone’s anger subsides, the true emotions are revealed. This can help you empathize with a person of a tough exterior.

P. 36,37  Beth is talking about how the virgins were treated and judged solely on their appearance. “It’s tough being a woman in a world where beauty is a treatment”. People still treat other people according to their outward appearance.  Should we react to this injustice by throwing away our Mary Kay?  No, keep your make-up on (por favor) but, don’t rely on your looks for your self-confidence.  Remember, God looks at the heart and His opinion is the only true one.  Oh, and His opinion is that you are His chosen, beloved, forgiven child.

WEEK TWO, Day 2
May 18, 2009

WHAT’S THE ANSWER?

Page 40, If you have a hard time imagining the reactions of the girls in the harem, just watch an episode of “The Bachelor”.

Page 41, Finding and gaining favor:  God gives favor (helps someone to be liked) to accomplish His will.  But, it looks like Esther found favor and gained favor, which means she did her part to up her like-ability factor.

WHAT’S THE POINT?

Gaining favor can be a God-thing.  We’re not talking about being a people-pleaser, we’re talking about being polite (pleasant words Prov. 16:21,23), self-controlled (Proverbs 29:11), and brave like Esther was in order to be used by God. 

Favor opens the doors of spiritual opportunity.  I always think of Miss California (Carrie Prejean) who was almost chosen to be Miss USA until she stood up for what she believed in regarding homosexuality.  But, God got the last word because the 1st place winner, Kristen Dalton, is also a born-again believer.  miss-usa-kristen-dalton

What do you think?

I don’t think they were chosen solely for their beauty, but for that inner beauty that Christ gives.  Think about all the American Idol finalists who are born-again believers -  Mandisa, Sparks, Doolittle and Sligh from previous seasons.  Danny Gokey, and Kris Allen from the current season are worship leaders at their home church.  Why do you think these Christian young people win the favor of the world?

WEEK TWO, Day 3
May 18, 2009

WHAT’S THE ANSWER?

Esther’s “unknown” racial and economic background meant she was a secret agent of God.  But, God wants our Christ-identity to be known to the world around us.

Page 44, Personal Question, “describe a few of the circumstances that make distinctiveness a challenge in your environment”.  One challenge I face is that in order to gain a friendship for the purpose of evangelization, I need to look relevant and relate-able.  In other words, I pay attention to my looks to open doors of relationship, but sometimes I get too caught up in it.

WHAT’S THE POINT?

Page 46, Praise God for The King of Kings who gives us dignity, Who clothes me with garments of salvation (Isaiah 61:10), washes me through His Word (Ephesians 5:25-27), and makes me his pure bride (Revelation 19:7-8,16)

WEEK TWO, Day 4
May 17, 2009

WHAT’S THE ANSWER?

Push your way through this long lesson, it’s worth it.  After a year of spa treatments, Esther’s turn had come to choose something blingy or scented from the harem for her visit with the King.  She didn’t ask for anything, rather asked the Harem manager guy what she should bring.  This brings great insight into the character of Esther.

WHAT’S THE POINT?

Humble people don’t get greedy (Esther not asking for anything).  They take advice (Esther taking Hegai’s advice).  They get along with their peers (Esther was favored by everyone.)  “Pride only breeds quarrels, but wisdom is found in those who take advice.” (Proverbs 13:10) 

The even BIGGER POINT:  In spite of all of Esther’s wonderful inner and outer qualities that aided in her being the chosen Queen, the real reason King Xerxes chose her was that A King’s decisions are directed by God (Prov. 21:1)

WEEK TWO, Day 5
May 17, 2009

WHAT’S THE ANSWER?

Even though Esther was already queen, she continued to obey uncle Mordecai.  Top of page 53, Beth asks us what Hebrews 6:10-12 has to do with this.  I’ll share my interpretation, then you can write what you think.  I wrote, “Continuing with diligence and hard work to help people and cooperate with people like Esther did will be seen and rewarded by God”.

 

WHAT’S THE POINT?

We are really tapping into displays of noble character the more we read about Esther.  What queen still obeys her guardian from childhood?  And if you are tempted to think she was a brainless submissive type, you’ll see later in the study her bravery and ability to make very difficult decisions.

If you are analyzing your own character compared to Esther, you are getting the point.  I see how I have missed out on the favor of people by not following instructions and by being uncoorperative.  This has hindered my ministry.  Esther is a great example to me.  What about you??

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