Mother. The word conjures up all kinds of thoughts and feelings. For some, it’s Mrs. Walton in a big farmhouse sitting around a harvest table in the midst of the Great Depression. (For others, it’s just plain depression…sorry about that.) My mother-in-law wasn’t against apple pie, but hers usually came out of a box in the freezer. I like to tell my girls (now grown) that if they ever doubt my love for them, just to stick a finger in their belly button, ‘cuz that’s where we were connected for so long, and even tho’ the umbilical cord needed to be cut, the cord to their mom’s heart never is.
AWWWwwwww….okay, may be corny, but true. (They have told me that I was also not a conventional mother.) However, as different as we all are in our parenting philosophies, for the most part moms want good things for their progeny.
And I’m sure that was the same for a little Jewish girl named Esther back in the Old Testament days.
Esther’s own mother had died. I imagine that her mom was one of the original exiles from their homeland in Israel before it had been overrun by cruel enemy nations. She probably had visions, like most mothers, of her daughter growing up to be a nice Jewish girl who marries a nice Jewish boy and has nice Jewish children. Only, that was not to happen. She was lovingly raised by her uncle, but rather than following the Mosaic Law of marrying that nice Jewish boy and raising those nice Jewish children, she ends up in a pagan king’s harem. Assuredly not what her mom had had in mind.
But God had a plan.
Dr. James Dobson wrote a book many years ago, the title of which pretty well sums it up: Parenting Isn’t for Cowards. It’s a gross understatement to say that our children’s circumstances can make us unhappy. Sometimes it is of their own choosing, sometimes not. But even then, we can trust God to place them strategically. The main thing is eternity, and God doesn’t give us children to populate Hell. And, free will notwithstanding, He knows the best road for each one of us to take, weaving people through our lives along the way to Heaven.
Esther’s situation wasn’t kosher (pardon the pun), and yet God used her to save the nation of Israel from annihilation, thus preserving the generational line for the Messiah to arrive, and with it, our salvation. Are your children not where you want them to be? Don’t despair, and continue that whole “pray without ceasing” (without giving up) and “in everything give thanks” thing.
Because God has a plan.