Esther was a woman who lived for a cause greater than herself. God used this woman to save the entire Jewish people from extermination. However, before God could use her, she had to come to a place of death in herself. It was not an easy decision. Her cousin Mordecai was the instrument God used to challenge her to measure up to the task.
Do not think that because you are in the king's house you alone of all the Jews will escape. For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father's family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this? (Esther 4:13b-14)
Mordecai was telling it straight. For her to speak up meant great risks if the king did not receive her. It was automatic death if the king did not extend his scepter, which meant acceptance of her approach to the throne. It was also a time to realize that God may have brought her to this place and time for this specific purpose. However, if she did not respond in faith, God would use another instrument to deliver the people. What would she do?Go, gather together all the Jews who are in Susa, and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my maids will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish (Esther 4:16). On the third day of the fast she came and stood in the inner court of the palace, in front of the king's hall. She was like Jesus who stood in the inner court of Heaven on that third, resurrection day. She gave up her life, but God raised it up on that day and delivered an entire people from destruction because of one woman's willingness to give up her life for a greater cause. God has called each of us to a purpose greater than ourselves. Know that it will require death before life can be given to this purpose. It must be His life that lives, not ours.