Friday, November 18, 2011


          Why me? Why this? Why now?  Why stage 4 lung cancer? Why now, in the prime of my life? Why me? Why not some death row criminal? 

          Have I said those words? Oh, yes.
          Do I have any answers? I wish.

         But the questions transport me back to one of the most well loved stories of the Bible…..and they are answerable by parroting the well known verse in that book. Am I here, in this unwanted situation “for such a time as this?”
          I love peeking back at the story of Esther.
          The Persian king, Xerxes, had put on a huge banquet for everyone in his kingdom. When he was drunk, he ordered his wife, Queen Vashti, to appear at the banquet wearing her beautiful crown, but Vashti refused. As punishment for her disobedience, King Xerxes banished her from the palace. To choose a new queen, the king called for a beauty pageant and chose Esther, a young Jewish orphan. He married her, but she had a secret….she was Jewish. She kept her Jewish identity a secret on the advice of Mordecai, her uncle. 
          The king’s ministers, Bigthan and Teresh, plotted to kill the king. Mordecai learned of their plot, told Queen Esther, and Esther reported it to the king. The king ordered the two plotters to be hanged. Xerxes then chose Haman as his senior minister. Haman demanded complete loyalty of everyone in the king’s service, and ordered all to bow down to him. But Mordecai refused, giving as an excuse that bowing down to another person was forbidden by his Jewish faith. This angered Haman, and he decreed the destruction not only of Mordecai, but of all the Jews of the kingdom. 
          News of the decree spread throughout the kingdom, and the Jews were greatly distressed. Mordecai begs timid Esther to plead with the king to save the lives of her people. Esther 4:14: Mordecai sends this message to Esther, “Don’t think for a moment that you will escape there in the palace when all other Jew are killed. If you keep quiet at a time like this, deliverance for the Jews will arise from some other place, but you and your relatives will die. What’s more, who can say but that you have been elevated to the palace for just such a time as this?”
          Queen Esther summoned all of her courage and went before the king. Using her feminine wiles, Esther persuaded the king to offer her the fulfillment of any wish. She told him about the plot against her people and asked that it be stopped. The king granted her wish and ordered Haman to be hanged. So, on the day intended for their destruction, the Jewish people were saved. 
          Esther was in a situation she did not ask to be in or want to be in. I can imagine her feeling the same things. Why her? Why then? Why this?
          I remembered this story during years of infertility when I realized how many other couples going through the same thing were “just happening” to meet us. We understood their grief and frustration, and because we had been through it, were able to offer support and resources. Did we go through those years for just such a time as that?
          I remembered this story during my second bout of depression when 5 other women in my church came to me and told me they, too, were experiencing depression, and did I think we could form a support group? Had I been allowed to experience depression for just such a time as that?
          Here, now, in this time frame, I have cancer. Why me? Why this? Why now? Oh, I wish I knew. Only my Savior knows those answers. The only question that matters now is: What do I do now? Where do I go from here? Who can benefit from my adversity? Is this my time for cancer because there are others who need to hear the truths about divine healing? And they need to hear them now? And they need to hear them from me or they won’t hear them at all? Did I need an incurable disease to be used for the Kingdom?
          My most dire prayer is that none of this will go to waste. That for such a time as this, God will use me, as He did Esther, for something greater than myself and my own purposes, and that He will be mightily glorified every mile of the journey.


1 comment:

Cole said...

I'm nodding in agreement with tears. I had the same rush of emotions when I went through a bible study of Esther this fall.

I look back at circumstances and see the good that has risen out of the ashes of my past and trust that same path once again.

I'm praying for all of the people God is preparing to hear your testimony and that His timing will seem so absolutely amazing to all around you that there will be nowhere to look but to Him. Thank you for sharing your courageous walk with Him, Mary!! Hearts have already been hearing it loud and clear. ;)

May you and your guys be blessed this Thanksgiving and know that I count you as one of my great blessings!!