2019-09-24 Attitude Adjustments

“Yet all this is worth nothing to me, so long as
I see Mordecai the Jew sitting at the king’s gate.”
Esther 5:13

I read this just last night, and this morning it was in my devotional. Isn’t it interesting how God works things? This guy named Haman rose to be a real big shot in a kingdom that covered Africa to India around 500 B.C.. He was second in command. In fact, he bragged to his wife just how good he had everything: wealth, power, and fame. He had it all, except one thing. There was this Jew named Mordecai who wouldn’t bow to him. Everyone else did, except this one Jew who was exiled from a conquered nation. His hatred of Mordecai was so severe that none of his blessings mattered. Wow!

This guy could have used my lesson yesterday. Well, it was Paul’s lesson, actually, about renewing your mind. Haman needed an attitude adjustment, certainly. In all fairness, we all do. Without a doubt, Mordecai was a real problem; and Haman could have dealt with him any number of ways. However, the method he chose ended up costing Haman his own life. Interestingly, Mordecai ended up as one of the leaders of the Jews when they returned to rebuild the temple (Nehemiah 7:7). I just read that (and noticed it for the first time) just the other day.

It is clear that Haman needed an attitude adjustment, but so did Mordecai. If you recall Romans 13, Paul instructs us to be subject to the governing authorities. Even Jeremiah gave specific instructions on this.

Jeremiah 29:4 “Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, to all the exiles whom I have sent into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon: Build houses and live in them; plant gardens and eat their produce. Take wives and have sons and daughters; take wives for your sons, and give your daughters in marriage, that they may bear sons and daughters; multiply there, and do not decrease. But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.

Mordecai’s deliberate insolence infuriated Haman. This resulted in the death sentence to all the Jews in captivity. Only the handful that had been left in Jerusalem would have been left on the planet. Yet God wasn’t going to let that happen, and he orchestrated one of the most amazing turn-around stories of all time. You can read this yourself in the book of Esther.

This gets back to my devotional. Both of these guys had their eyes on the wrong thing. Both were so full of pride that they jeopardized their lives. How foolish! Yet, we all find ourselves needed an attitude adjustment, don’t we? We all take our eyes off what is most important. Listen to what George Swinnock (a Puritan preacher) had to say:

“If the world’s darlings enjoy many good things, they lack all without Christ. God is all good things, and every good thing. He is self-sufficient, alone-sufficient, and all-sufficient. If God were your portion, you would find in him whatsoever your heart could desire, and tend to your happiness. Are you ambitious? He is a crown of glory. Are you covetous? He is unsearchable riches and righteousness. Do you desire pleasure? He is rivers of pleasures and fulness of joy. Are you hungry? He is a feast of wine on the lees and the fat things of marrow. Are you weary? He is rest, a shadow from the heat, and a shelter from the storm. Are you weak? He is everlasting strength. Are you doubting? He is marvelous in counsel. Are you in darkness? He is the Sun of righteousness. Are you sick? He is the God of your health. Are you sorrowful? He is the God of all consolations. Whatever your calamity, he can remove it. Whatever your necessity, he can relieve it. He is silver, gold, honour, delight, food, raiment, house, land, peace, wisdom, power, beauty, father, mother, wife, husband, mercy, love, grace, glory, and infinitely more than all these. There are all sorts of delights in him. He is the tree of life bearing all manner of fruits, and a variety of all comforts. See God, and you see all. Enjoy God, and enjoy all.” (Voices from the Past – Puritan Devotional Readings – Volume I, Edited by Richard Rushing)

There you have it. If we can’t get our heads straight by pondering all this, then we have only ourselves to blame. Let me leave you with one last tidbit, this time from John:

John 21:25 Now there are also many other things that Jesus did. Were every one of them to be written, I suppose that the world itself could not contain the books that would be written.

Check it out!

Father, what can I say? Thank you! Amen.

Copyright © 2019 Scott Powers

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