Scripture: Esther 2:1–18
Esther’s story is about God’s providence and how His ways and timing accomplish His perfect will in our lives. Through Esther’s story, we will learn that she was prepared throughout her life for God’s purposes.
Suggested Meeting Outline
- Welcome and Opening Prayer
- Praise and Worship “Through It All” by Hillsong, “I’m Trading My Sorrows” – by Darrell Evans,*
- Song #492 “God will Make a Way”**
- Activity – Lifetime in the Making Scrapbook
- Scripture Reading – Esther 2:1–18
- Devotional: “A Lifetime in the Making”
- Closing Prayer
**The Salvation Army Song Book
Lifetime in the Making Scrapbook
Before starting the scrapbooking activity, share the following questions so that the women can reflect on how God has been at work in their lives to fulfill His purpose. Encourage them to share with those around the table. There can be soft music in the background to make this an intimate moment of sharing
- What specific event shaped your life and why?
- Who are some people that spoke wisdom to your life?
- What was the one milestone you always looked forward to reaching when you were younger?
Ask the women ahead of time to bring pictures of their family members and special occasions in their life that they feel have shaped them into who they are today. These can be milestones or pictures of places they visited or where they lived. Make sure they know these pictures will be used for a scrapbook page.
Set up each table with scrapbook paper in various colors and patterns, scissors, glue sticks, fun stickers, stamps, color markers, pens, rulers, binder, whole punch, and washi tape (available from Amazon).
Invite the women to select the picture that represents one event in their lives and glue it to the scrapbook paper as a starting point. They can decorate the page as they wish with the materials provided. They can add names, scripture verses, and feelings evoked by the pictures. Once done, punch holes in the sheets and encourage them to further develop their personal “lifetime in the making” binders. More scrapbook ideas can be obtained from the following sites:
Are our lives a series of coincidences? Or is every detail in it planned and carried out by God? As believers, there are no accidents or coincidences. We do not know what God is planning for us. But what is clear is that God has a special purpose and plan for each one of us. With that in mind, He begins to prepare us. He begins to arrange our life circumstances and moves behind the scenes to get us to where we ought to be. When the appropriate time comes, we will be ready to be used by God. That is what happened to Esther.
Esther is one of the great heroines in the Bible. She lost both her parents at an early age. As an orphan, she was raised by her Uncle Mordecai whom God used to shape Esther’s life and to help her face challenges with faith and courage. Although she grew up in a foreign land without her parents, her faith remained unchanged. Although she grew up in a poor environment, she did not give in to the environment. Mordecai wisely advised Esther, and she ended up in palace as the queen who saved her people.
Scripture tells us that Esther was chosen to marry King Xerxes and become his queen. The king sent out officers to find women candidates to replace Queen Vashti who had incensed the king. Esther was among the women selected to undergo a rigorous preparation. After 12 months she was finally given an audience with the king.
Scripture tells us that the King loved Esther more than all the other women. This was no coincidence: Esther becoming queen was part of God’s plan to save His people in a time of crisis. Esther was a young, beautiful Jewish woman who worshipped the God of Israel. Although King Xerxes did not know about her Jewish heritage, he chose her out of the many other beautiful women presented to him. Again, this was not a coincidence but the providence of God at work, something we cannot always fully understand. We can only trust that He has control over all circumstances in our lives and that He positions us for His purpose. Though some of those circumstances may appear unfair at times, His purpose will always result in a blessing.
Charles Swindoll states, “Esther is a story of triumph that grew out of tragedy, ecstasy out of agony, celebration out of devastation. Through Esther’s story, we can see a dramatic reversal in the face of despair and the rise and fall of a nation. God had a plan for saving the nation through her life. God has been preparing her. God had work for her to do.”
Esther was placed in a royal position to assist in the delivery of God’s divine plan for His people. As a godly young lady, Esther allowed God to use her and work through her life to bring great deliverance to the people of Israel. God does not impose His plan on us, but we always benefit in the long run when we say yes to Him.
Sometimes God places us in a particular position or a certain place for a specific reason. God uses everything and everybody for His divine purpose. You never know what God is doing in your life. I will assure you that wherever you are and whatever the circumstances of your life, God is getting you ready for something He wants to do in your heart and life. Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose” (NIV).
God can use anyone who is willing to be used for His glory. He is ultimately in control of all things in our lives. May God bless and strengthen and use you for His glory.