Esther 3:6 and 1 Corinthians 13:12: “Now I know in part; then I shall know fully even as I am fully known.”
The biblical account of Esther seems to beg this question, “Where is God?” How odd for a biblical book to have no reference to God. He is never mentioned in this story and nowhere to be found. As we read about Esther, we are tempted to think that God doesn’t exist, or if He does, He is not much of a participant in human history.
Yet on reading the entire account it is hard to miss the unusual “coincidences” and the near-impossible “happy ending.” In fact, Jewish people to this day revere the account of Esther and annually celebrate Purim to proclaim how God was at work during this time to save their nation from genocide.
Esther seems to illustrate for us that there are times when God is most eloquent in His silence. Sometimes it is in God’s silence that His work in us is the most powerful.
Does God seem silent and distant in your life? Perhaps you’re unaware because you never relied on Him or looked for Him. Or sometimes it is a matter of perspective.
In the moment, our distressing circumstances can make us think that wickedness is winning or misery rules the day. But we need to remember — we can’t see into the future, and we are unable to escape our past. We are confined by time even as God moves outside time. He transcends time. He has eternity in view, and when it comes to the panorama of God’s all-seeing mind, “we are able to see only the pinprick hole of the moment” (Philip Yancey).
Philip Yancey, in his book Disappointment with God, goes on to say that no matter how we rationalize, God will sometimes seem unfair and even out of touch from the perspective of a person trapped in time. Only after we have attained God’s perspective and every evil is punished, every moment accounted for, will we see that God is indeed fair, AND merciful, working out all things for His glory and our good.
In Esther’s story, we have a glimpse of how God is working in human history and hearts. Even so, at different points in Esther’s life things looked hopeless, “Godless,” and out of control. It is not until the very end that everything finds its place and God’s redemptive purposes are revealed. When we are tempted to think our circumstances are God-forsaken, allow the account of Esther to encourage you to believe otherwise.