Can I just talk to my sisters for a minute?
I know I have mentioned this in other posts, but I started the Esther: It’s Tough Being a Woman study by Beth Moore about 7 weeks ago. My friend Kristen had recommended it, and then as I started checking around with people, many other women I know raved about the study. I must say… I immediately connected with this one. The study talks about a common struggle many women face… being too much and not enough all at the same time…boy, will that preach. I feel like I hear that struggle come from the lips of many a mom, daughter, youth, sister, and grandmother all the time. No wonder so many women I know recommended it!
I finished the 9 week study a bit early, and in her video today with her closing thoughts Beth lovingly referred to is at NOT as the book of Esther but the book of estrogen. I understand why… It is such a girl book. My emotions with this book have gone every which way. I have weeped over the thought of an orphan girl being sent to “please” the King. I have gotten mad at Xerxes for ostracizing people for his own ego boost. I have shaken my head with Mordecai at the thought of an innocent people being murdered for their pure Jewish decent. I have laughed at the way God can turn the tables with Hamon building gallows to hang someone innocent and then all in a sudden HE gets hung on them.
Usually in studies, I find myself relating to 1 specific character. In this study, I have been every character… Sometimes I am Mordecai who feels looked over but remains obedient even though he rants a bit. Sometimes I am as stubborn and prideful as Vashti and end up punished for it. Sometimes I am Haman acting out in meaness due to old wounds. Sometimes I am aloof like Xerxes and cause everyone heartache because of it. Sometimes I am Esther who is just plain old putting her big girl britches on and doing what I gotta do. So, if you are a dude…and you still continued reading… take heart. You can learn something too.
I have purely enjoyed this study. The unique thing with this book of the Bible is there is no direct mention of God in it. Not once. However, He is all over every page, feast, party, scene, and chapter. This is true in life as well… Often times when I am not hearing directly from God… He is still all over it.
I thought I would share with you the nuggets of truth that stuck with me that I have gathered doing this study. Every week of the study began with the sentence “It’s tough being a woman….” then you would fill in the blank. About half way through, we started turning the negatives about being a woman around with the truth of the word to combat each statement. I just thought I would list the highlights of what I learned or found interesting from each segment just so you can get a taste.
1- It’s tough being a woman in another woman’s shadow.
-Whether she was a good woman or a bad woman…it’s still tough. I can relate to that in many ways… relationships, family, friends, work. It is a common thing. Comparison is tough.
2- It’s tough being a woman in a world where beauty is a treatment.
-That means the way you are treated because of your beauty or lack there of…or it can mean to live in a society where there is such an emphasis on beauty treatments. We studied both schools of thought.
-We also talked about how God didn’t get confused… He knows you are a chick,…and where He has currently placed you to be an influence.
3- It’s tough being a woman in a mean world.
-Now I did a whoooole blog post on this one. Check it out here. https://carolinehare.wordpress.com/2013/04/03/on-wednesdays-we-wear-pink/
4- It’s tough being a woman thrown a giant size weight.
-Here Esther is having her own personal crisis of having trouble in paradise with the King. In the midst of that, she is called upon to act on behalf of the Jews. We talked about how oftentimes, WE don’t think it’s the right timing…but God’s time is prime time.
-Sometimes the question of “who knows?” is thrown out…and you feel like you don’t “know,” but you do “know” God.
5- It’s tough being a woman in the tight fist of fear.
-The most common command in the Bible is “do not fear” or “fear not.” It’s said 365 times actually.
6-It’s tough being a woman who can balance passion and patience.
-We talked specifically about waiting on the Lord…When the “meantime” is actually “Godtime.” We will loose our strength when we wait upon an event, person, or thing. However, waiting on God will renew our strength.
7- It’s tough being a woman who feels responsible for the “how.”
-Fire yourself. We are called to be obedient to what we do know for sure, not to figure it out.
8- Every turn around starts with a step.
– Esther stepped through. Haman stepped off. Xerxes stepped in. Mordecai stepped up.
9- God can’t turn a table that was never turned against you.
-Big battles are won by teams.
-You can’t just wait or want others to fight for you…God always say, “Not only will I fight for you…but I would die for you.”
These are my nuggets of truth I learned…take them…chew on them…debate them…but seriously,…go get the study. It’s awesome. If you are a chick…I know you can get something out of it. Also, if you go to Trinity, we just so happen to have a summer study of this book coming up! So sign up if you haven’t!