I love the story of Esther, and how she found the queen inside of her! I hope by the end of this post you will be able to find the queen inside of you. Yet, each time I read it I find more interesting facts about her that amaze me. To preface this story, the Queen Vashti and King Ahasuerus were having a feast for many of the prominent leaders in the land. Not only a feast, but for 180 days the king celebrated his honor and riches. Queen Vashti was holding a feast for the women and King Ahasuerus prepared a feast for the men. On the seventh day of their feasting, King Ahasuerus commands for the Queen to be brought in to his feast so that he could show everyone how beautiful she was. She refused his command, and was demoted from her throne.
Upon the extermination of the queen, all the eligible girls of the land were called in for the opportunity to demonstrate their beauty before the king. One would be chosen to be the next queen in the land. Esther had been chosen as one of the girls that would present herself to the king, but she was different than all the other girls. She was a Jewish girl. At that time her people had been under great attack. She had been taken captive, and had been living with her cousin Mordecai because her family had been killed.
Esther had every right to be sad and depressed. Most likely she did not have everything the other girls had. She could have felt that she was the least qualified to be the next queen. Yet, I find that Esther did not have a “poor me” attitude. In Esther 2:7 the Bible says about Esther that she was “fair and beautiful.” While I was researching these words in my Bible concordance and dictionary the following are some adjectives that describe Esther in her fair beauty:
Properly, to be bright, beautiful, be (make self) fair, deck (decorate herself), outline, figure or appearance, comely, countenance, form, favoured, goodly, pleasant, well, good, good men or women, beautiful, best, better, bountiful, cheerful, at ease, gracious, joyful, kindly, kindness, pleasant, precious, sweet, pleaseth, prosperity, wealth, welfare, be well favoured.
From these adjectives I thought about Esther in how she probably did not have much if she was an orphan. I do not know though, maybe Mordecai was wealthy. I am sure Esther had a lot of personal baggage to deal with. She could have harbored bitterness in her heart, yet she was cheerful and easy going. By the way, some of the bad things that happen to us can work for our good if we allow them to. Since Esther had a good figure, I am sure she had to work hard from a young age as an orphan girl. Since Esther was easy going, I am sure she had to learn how to deal with problems and overcome life’s challenges. Since Esther was cheerful, I am sure she had to learn to discipline her mind to think positively. Since Esther was sweet, I am sure that she had to practice forgiveness continually with the loss of her family and being taken into captivity.
I am sure all the young maidens that came before the king were beautiful, but what made Esther different than all the other young maidens? She was given to the custody of Hegai, the keeper of the women. The Bible says in Ester 2:9 that Esther “pleased and obtained kindness” from Hegai. She was not only concerned about her beauty and status with the king, but she was even concerned about the welfare of the man who was in charge of her. If she received kindness from Hegai, this leads me to believe that Esther was kind and cheerful to him. If Hegai was stressed about his day or his workload with taking care of all the young women of the land, Esther tried to lighten his load. She probably told him jokes and made him smile.
I have heard people make comments such as, “She is a suck up,” or “I would make good grades too if I were the teacher’s pet” or “I would be in that position too if I had all that she had,” or “I would be clean too if I were just naturally as organized as she is.”
Esther could have used excuses why she was the least desirable to be the queen. She could have let her insecurities stand in her way. She could have lashed out at other girls who she was competing against. Yet, she continued to be kind. She did not use excuses for why she could not do something. We need to be careful that we do not jab at others girls and ladies because we are insecure with who we are. We need to learn to be funny without using our jokes to jab at one another. Many times this is how people find their humor by using their jokes at the expense of others.
When I was a teenager I had really long hair. When I wore it in a ponytail some people said, “When I look at that back of you, you look like a horse’s rear end.” I heard the laughter. I also was told that my feet were so big that I could use my shoes as snow skis. “You have so many freckles you can play connect the dots on your face.” We all have statements that people have said about us that stick with us, but we should not let those statements define who we are. On the other hand, we should never be the type of person that only finds humor at the expense of others.
Because Esther pleased Hegai, he speedily gave her everything she needed for her twelve months of purification (a process of essential oils for purification and beautification), he gave her seven maidens to help her, and placed her in the best spot to be noticed by the king above all the other girls. Esther could have been only obsessed with her outer appearances and could have asked for anything she wanted to make her more beautiful. Yet, she received the counsel of Hegai and only used the things that Hegai recommended.
I thought this was an interesting thought as well because Hegai was the king’s chamberlain. I am sure that he knew all the king’s preferences and would be able to relay those to Esther. Esther listened to Hegai and took everything that he appointed to her. In result, she “obtained favour in the sight of all them that looked upon her.” (Esther 2:15)
Wow, what an amazing story of a woman who truly made a difference for her people! The statement is made often that man looks on the outside and God looks on the heart. I have heard this statement concluded to both extremes. Some will say only the heart is important, and some believe the outward appearance is the only thing that is important. On the contrary, the Bible is teaching that God cares much about the beauty of the heart. How is our heart’s condition? Is our spirit beautiful, rejoicing, and kind? While God looks at the heart, our greatest mission as Christians is to reach people with the Gospel of Christ. If man looks on the outward, how important is it for us to be conscientious of how we are presenting ourselves to others. Do we take care of outward appearance and the beauty that God has given to us women? Do we wear a smile so that others are refreshed by our kindness?
I hope these thoughts will help you as a teen girl to find the queen inside of you! Or if you are married woman, I hope these thoughts will refresh you and encourage you to continue being the queen inside of you for the sake of your husband, family, and others.