First Reading: Esther 14:1. 3-4. 11. 13-14; Psalm: 138. R. v. 3a; Gospel: Mt 7:7-12
THE FAITH OF QUEEN ESTHER
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
Sometimes we are threatened by affliction in order to see the mighty works of God. So that when our fears are defeated and the impossible begins to be possible; we can truly testify the greatest of God. When the Jews feared the looming danger of annihilation due to the plot of Haman a royal official; Queen Esther cried to God in prayer together with her maidservants from morning until evening. She prayed to God to give her the gift of eloquence to convince the king and turn his heart to hate Haman who wanted to exterminate the Jewish people. Although it was a matter of time; but Queen Esther saved her people from the evil plot of Haman.
Queen Esther’s faith in God was reflective in her prayers. Though she was ceased with fear and anxiety hearing of the plan of Haman; but she trusted in God still. Her words of prayer were so touching: “O Lord, save us from the hand of our enemies; turn our mourning into gladness and our affliction into well-being.” And indeed, God saved them from evil. Jesus in the gospel asked us to trust in God when we pray; for God knows what is best for us. When our situation seems hopeless; that may not be God’s answer to prayers. Perhaps patience is what we need to see the remarkable works of God.
It is possible that presently many of us are distressed, anxious, scared, and hopeless due to some sad events that hit us so hard. But we must not lose faith in God. Let us keep believing. The people of Israel having celebrated their liberation from Egypt suddenly felt all hope was lost when Pharaoh and his horsemen gave them a chase as they stood before the red sea. But God said to them, “Be still and know that I am God.” And indeed, God proved himself. Queen Esther too was scared in the face of impending affliction; but God also proved himself. We must never give up in believing in God in the face of affliction. Everything is possible to all who believe.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
O Lord, turn our mourning into gladness and our affliction into well-being. Amen