For Such a Time As This
Why am I here? Why now? Why in this time and place? I could have been born into some peasant family in ancient Gaul. Or not born at all. Why here and now? If God has called me by his grace and placed me into Christ, that fact alone gives me a sense of ultimate purpose. But still I must ask, “Why here and now?” The Most High God orders all things according to the purpose of his will, and my life here and now cannot possibly be a mere accident.
We may be inclined to think about this question in terms of examples from the past – and this is good and right. Joseph was raised up to save his world from starvation and to bring the budding Israelite nation down to Egypt. Moses was raised up to lead them back out. David was entrusted with the role of shepherd-king, typifying the great Shepherd-King to come. Esther was called to rescue her people from the threat of annihilation. At a macro level, all these things are true.
But it is also true that they become clear mostly in hindsight. In the crucible of day-to-day experience none of this was obvious. Joseph, notoriously, was sold into slavery by his own brothers, was falsely accused and cast into prison, and languished there for years. Moses was run out of Egypt and seemed destined to live out his life as a nobody shepherd in the wilderness. David was the target of murderous fits of jealous rage and was made to flee into exile in the land of enemies. Esther … ah, yes, Esther. What was required of Esther? Only that, in faith, she face down the threat of the penalty of death for entering an ancient tyrant’s inner court uninvited.
In the crucible of day-to-day experience it is typically impossible to know what God might intend to do with us in macro terms. In this respect, we know even less than these heroes of old. Joseph at least had dreams suggesting that he would one day find himself in a place of authority. Moses had some sense, though buried under layers of disappointment, that God intended to rescue his people through him (Acts 7:25). David had been anointed king before Saul’s fits of rage. But then again, there is Esther. What did Esther have? Only the courage of faith, and words of wisdom from a cousin-guardian encouraging her to be a proper steward of the opportunity entrusted to her at a crucial moment in redemptive history.
What more do you and I need than the courage of faith, the Spirit’s empowerment, and the will to heed God’s call in this present moment, fulfilling whatever stewardship he offers us in this present moment? Who knows whether we have not come to the Kingdom for such a time as this? And who knows what our present courage through faith in this present moment might mean in the long run? What lives might be touched? Who might be rescued? We don’t. But God does.
Let this be your word of encouragement to give yourself to the service of the King for his purposes in the context in which he has placed you. If not now, then when? If not you, then who?