Lent 2023 First Reading

Thursday of the First Week of Lent

The first reading for today is taken from the book of Esther. Haman, adviser to King Xerxes of Persia, wanted to have all of the Jews in the empire exterminated in a single day. Esther, a Jew by birth and Queen to Xerxes, is, “seized with mortal anguish. She lay prostate upon the ground, together with her handmaids, from morning until evening, and said, ‘God of Abraham, God of Isaac, God of Jacob, blessed are you. Help me, who am alone and have no help but you, for I am taking my life in my hand.’”

By God’s Grace I have never been in Esther’s position. I have experienced times, though, when I felt that God was the only person who could undo the knot in my life. It is a desperate feeling to cast oneself on the Lord.

He has never let me down. I may not find what I need right away, but God always comes through for me, just as he did for Esther and the children of Israel. He saved them from death, because of Esther’s prayers and bravery!

He saves us too, if we only remember to ask him. God is gracious to us in our need he, “turns our mourning into gladness and our sorrows into wholeness!”

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