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A Holy Nudge For Such a Time

Words of Faith Final

A Holy Nudge For Such a Time
Words of Faith 6-15-2021
Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2008, 2021
Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL
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Esther 5
      [1] On the third day Esther put on her royal robes and stood in the inner court of the palace, in front of the king's hall. The king was sitting on his royal throne in the hall, facing the entrance. [2] When he saw Queen Esther standing in the court, he was pleased with her and held out to her the gold scepter that was in his hand. So Esther approached and touched the tip of the scepter.  
    [3] Then the king asked, "What is it, Queen Esther? What is your request? Even up to half the kingdom, it will be given you."
    [4] "If it pleases the king," replied Esther, "let the king, together with Haman, come today to a banquet I have prepared for him."
    [5] "Bring Haman at once," the king said, "so that we may do what Esther asks."
    So the king and Haman went to the banquet Esther had prepared. [6] As they were drinking wine, the king again asked Esther, "Now what is your petition? It will be given to you. And what is your request? Even up to half the kingdom, it will be granted."
    [7] Esther replied, "My petition and my request is this: [8] If the king regards me with favor and if it pleases the king to grant my petition and fulfill my request, let the king and Haman come tomorrow to the banquet I will prepare for them. Then I will answer the king's question."
    Have you ever gotten a holy nudge?  It is an experience not nearly as dramatic as a talking donkey or a burning bush and not nearly as painful as a holy two-by-four.  But a holy nudge can be every bit as effective if we are willing to be nudged.
      Esther is a fascinating study precisely because of the apparently quiet guidance of God.  God is not mentioned directly in the book.  No prayers are recorded.  There are no words from the Lord with bold quotations.  Yet, the people of God are clearly cared for at this point in history.  God is here in the book of Esther.
      Esther dressed in her royal clothing and ventures before the king.  It was a dramatic moment as she awaited either a verdict of death or an invitation to speak.  The King welcomed Esther but we immediately begin to wonder.  What was Esther up to?  Did she chicken out?  She completely dodged the first opportunity to speak, offering instead to have the king and Haman at a banquet.  A fine setting for the request but, again, the needed plea was not forthcoming, and yet another invitation was made for a banquet with Haman.  Why all this stalling?  Had Esther lost her nerve?  Had she lost her opportunity?
        Scholars have offered several reasons for Esther's slowness to come forth with a plea for the Jewish people.  In all likelihood, it was simply not the right time and somehow Esther knew it.  No mistake about it, Esther knew exactly what she needed to do.  There is no evidence that she was losing courage.  But somehow she knew that this was NOT the right time and we know of no prophetic word or divine guidance in this regard. But somehow... she knew.
        Is it possible that Esther had a holy nudge?  That little check in the spirit that says-- Yes, this is the right thing but not the right time?   Does God actually guide us in such ways?  At those times when there is no time for contemplation-- no time for meditation-- only time to make a judgment call-- do we sometimes just know deep inside that the time is right or wrong?  
         Now don't mistake this for reckless self-reliance or impulsiveness.  Remember, Esther had spent three days in a severe fast.  She had laid some groundwork for being able to sense the nudge of God in such a situation.  Esther was wholly dedicated before the Lord.  But at that moment when she stood before the king-- somehow she knew-- the time was NOT right.  And even at the first banquet-- the time was NOT right.  
         How important is such a sensitivity to the Lord?   How important is it for us not to run ahead of the Lord and His timing?  We may never know for sure in this case.  But quite often the right plan-- at the wrong time-- is another name for failure.

         Lord, I am listening today.  No, I am not demanding a burning bush or a voice from heaven-- but I am listening.  Just listening.  Give me the Holy nudge that I need, when I need it.  Give me the restraint that I may not run ahead of You.  In Jesus' name.  Amen.

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© Jeffrey D. Hoy 2008, 2021
Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy - Faith Fellowship Church (EFCA)        
2820 Business Center Blvd.
Melbourne, Florida 32940 (321)-259-7200
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The Words of Faith devotion is published five days a week by E-mail, excluding Federal holidays. Please feel free to forward this devotion to a friend who might be blessed by this devotion. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is quoted from the New International Version (R) of The Holy Bible. Copyright (c) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. Words of Faith (c) 1997, 2010 Jeffrey D. Hoy. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to forward this copyrighted material or use portions of it with appropriate notation of the source for non-profit purposes.