READ: Esther 4-7
THINK: What's your destiny? In the words of American politician and speaker William Jennings Bryan (1860– 1925): "Destiny is no matter of chance; it is a matter of choice. It is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved." God had a plan for the Jewish people, even while they lived in exile within the Persian empire. God also has a plan for you, but you must be prepared for opposition while relying on Him to help you fulfill that purpose. Esther and Mordecai trusted God and took action in a seemingly hopeless situation, discovering their destiny in the process. You don't have to wait until you're older to make a difference for God's kingdom. God has strategically placed you where you are and is ready to give you hope, opportunity and direction...for such a time as this.
RESPOND: How should your relationship with God affect your attitude and actions in a crisis or situation beyond your control? How do Mordecai's words-"And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this?" (4:14)-challenge and inspire you? Do you think Esther had doubts about this plan? Why or why not? What are some situations in which doing the right thing might seem frightening or intimidating? Why do you think Esther wanted to fast (go without food) for three days before going to the king (4:16)? How did Esther show unselfish devotion to God and to her people? (See 4:16 note.) How can we keep fear from hindering our work for God? Why was Haman still dissatisfied, despite all his wealth and influence? (See 5:13 note.) How does Haman's character contrast with Mordecai's? What events at the beginning of chapter 6 show God's work behind the scenes to honor and protect His people? (See 6:1 note.) How do you think Haman felt as he led the procession to honor Mordecai (6:11-12)?
PRAY: Pray for God's favor with leaders and influential people. Ask Him to help you influence them for Jesus. Give God thanks for His constant work "behind the scenes" to accomplish His purposes in and through you. Ask God to give you a sense of destiny that recognizes and seizes opportunities to honor God and accomplish His purposes.
ACT: If there are no Christian clubs at your school, consider starting one. Plan a weekly meeting time to pray, discuss the Bible, share testimonies, plan service projects and encourage one another to stand strong for Christ. Look for "divine appointments"-opportunities God provides to fulfill a specific purpose or influence people for Christ. Be bold, trust God and take advantage of these situations.
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