I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, making every effort to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. Ephesians 4:1-3
He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? Micah 6:8
"Do not think that in the king's palace you will escape any more than all the other Jews. For if you keep silence at such a time as this, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another quarter, but you and your father's family will perish. Who knows? Perhaps you have come to royal dignity for just such a time as this." Esther 4:13-14
Imagine that you are placed in the exact spot where what you do, how you act can change the history of your people. What would you do? Would you play it safe? Would you continue on as if nothing has happened or would you step out and act?
The book of Esther asks this question. In a moment of great struggle, what would you do if you had the power to change history? There have been laws passed that will lead to the slaughter of your people. You have been placed in close proximity to the one person who has the power to change this outcome. Will you remain silent and hope that they don’t find out you are one of the people scheduled for discrimination and possibly death or will you do something courageous that could change the course of history? This is the question Esther’s cousin Mordecai asks Esther. He challenges to think about whether she has been placed in her position as one of the King’s wives in order to save her people. She chooses to act, to see this as the time when she can save her people.
Are we called to live a life where we do not confirm to the kingdom of earth or live as if we are already seeds for the kingdom of heaven? Micah 6:8 says that God has already told us what it means to be good: do justice, love kindness, and walk with God. These are active criteria for living as flowing God. We are to do, love, and walk. We are not to have a passive faith we are called to do justice: to actively work , to struggle for a world that is fair, where justice prevails, where there is no one who is hungry, in need of shelter, who struggles to get water, who can’t see a doctor, and does have meaningful work. We are to love kindness, be merciful, and practice an active faith life where we feed the hungry, cloth the naked, and visit those sick and imprisoned. And after all that we are to walk with God, meet God daily and spend our time immersed in the Spirit.
Tonight at our Lenten services we are focusing on what it means to act differently. Have you thought about what it means to live and act as a Christian? As Paul says, are you leading a life worthy of your calling?