Commemorating a Genocide Avoided

2015-04-28 12.05.47A big day for me in many respects. It was good to get back to my Tuesday prayer time at “Everyday Joes.”  Later this morning, I had (for know) my final physical therapy session at Northern Colorado Rehab Hospital as an outpatient. So this was my “graduation day.” I didn’t get a certificate, but did get a T-Shirt! (picture of me and PT Michael Jackson)

When I left NCRH on December 10, 2013, I told them the next time they would see me I hoped to be walking in as an outpatient. It took a few months but I did return for outpatient therapy in March 2014. Today I was able to walk in with crutches.

This afternoon, I took a recumbent bike on a trial ride. It was more challenging than I anticipated, but it was good to be outside once again. I am looking forward to what the future holds on this aspect of my exercise and recovery.

BIBLE VERSE FOR TODAY… Haman son of Hammedatha—the descendant of Agag and the enemy of the Jewish people—had cast lots (“purim,” they were called) to determine the day for destroying the Jews; he had planned to wipe them out. But Esther went to the king, and the king issued written orders with the result that Haman suffered the fate he had planned for the Jews—he and his sons were hanged from the gallows.  That is why the holidays are called Purim…. It was resolved that every Jewish family of every future generation in every province and every city should remember and observe the days of Purim for all time to come.” Esther 9:24-28

March 5, 2015 was the day to celebrate “Purim.” The fact that this event in on the annual Jewish calendar today, is a reminder of the events thousands of years ago that established this annual remembrance. Genocide is the eradication of a race or a group of people. The Jews have been the target of attempted genocide from the days of Esther to the Holocaust during World War II, to threats of current world leaders.

The verses above summarize the story of the Book of Esther and why this day was marked for remembrance. The story of Esther is a story of intrigue, plots, status seeking, principled leadership, and much more. While the story features Esther, the Jewish girl who became Queen. We see that her adopted father (cousin) Mordecai becomes the central figure in the story.

Mordecai encouraged Esther to enter the “contest to become Queen.” He showed his loyalty by revealing an attempt on the King’s life. He was the one who challenged Esther to rise to the occasion on behalf of her people. When the plot of Haman was revealed, Mordecai achieves a position of rank and influence in the kingdom.

The Book of Esther ends with this commendation of Mordecai, Mordecai the Jew was second in rank only to King Xerxes himself. He was honored and well-liked by his fellow Jews. He worked for the good of his people and for the security of all their descendants.” (Esther 10:3)

As you read the Book of Esther you will see how:

  • …. God is able to strategically place people in a position of influence at the right time
  • ….No person accomplishes God’s purpose on their own. We see Mordecai being the source of information and influence in Esther’s life. We see Esther calling on people to join her in fasting and prayer before approaching the King.
  • ….The resentment of Haman and his evil plot turn on him and be his ruin.
  • ….The resentment toward one man becomes a generalized hatred for an entire people.
  • ….The Lord works to save His people from their enemies
  • ….The Lord honors those who honor Him

The Book of Esther is not just a fascinating and multifaceted story; it is an important historic account in the life of God’s people that is still recognized today. It is a reminder that God is able to watch over and save His people. It is a reminder for us today that, “…the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials and to hold the unrighteous for punishment on the day of judgment. (2 Peter 2:9)