Large Print

Courage in Christ

Today's Devotional

I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish. Esther 4:16

Near the dawn of the twentieth century, Mary McDowell lived worlds apart from the brutal stockyards of Chicago. Although her home was just twenty miles away, she knew little about the horrific labor conditions that prompted workers in the stockyards to strike. Once she learned of the difficulties faced by them and their families, McDowell moved in and lived among them—advocating for better conditions. She ministered to their needs, including teaching children at a school in the back of a small shop.

Standing up for better conditions for others—even when not directly impacted—is something Esther did as well. She was the queen of Persia (Esther 2:17) and had a different set of privileges than her Israelite people who’d been dispersed throughout Persia as exiles. Yet Esther took up the cause of the Israelites in Persia and risked her life for them, saying, “I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish” (4:16). She could have remained silent, for her husband, the king, didn’t know she was Jewish (2:10). But, choosing not to ignore her relatives’ pleas for help, she worked courageously to reveal an evil plot to destroy the Jews.

We may not be able to take on massive causes like Mary McDowell or Queen Esther, but may we choose to see the needs of others and use what God has provided to help them.

How are you using what you possess to help others? What role can you play in providing for those who may not live near you?

Dear God, please give me the wisdom and courage to serve those in need.


Ezra and Nehemiah give the account of the small remnant of the Jews who returned to Judea after the Babylonian exile. Esther records the events of the Jews who chose to remain in Babylon. This story took place in Susa (modern Iran) during the reign of Persian King Xerxes (Esther 1:1-2, 486–465 bc). Interestingly, Esther is the only book in the Bible where God isn’t mentioned. Yet, it speaks volumes of God’s providential care and protection when He used a young Jewish woman to save her people from legally mandated genocide. This story explains the origin of the festival of Purim, where Jews commemorate being saved from extermination. Haman had cast a lot (pur) to determine on which day to destroy the Jews (9:24); the festival is a reminder that God is the one in control (vv. 20-32). 

Examine how God used women in the Bible.

By |2024-03-12T02:33:27-04:00March 12th, 2024|
Go to Top