“King Xerxes imposed tribute throughout the empire, to its distant shores. And all his acts of power and might, together with a full account of the greatness of Mordecai, whom the king had promoted, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Media and Persia? Mordecai the Jew was second in rank to King Xerxes, pre-eminent among the Jews, and held in high esteem by his many fellow Jews, because he worked for the good of his people and spoke up for the welfare of all the Jews.” NIV

The transformation of Mordecai’s circumstances is truly remarkable, and it is worthy of our attention one more time. Who could have imagined that a lowly and despised Jew would become second-in-command to the most powerful ruler in the world of that day?

But note how he used his power, and why he came to be held in such high esteem. Simon Sinek’s book on leadership is entitled ‘Leaders eat last’, and Mordecai exemplified servant leadership. He ‘’worked for the good’’ of others. Someone referred to Jesus as ‘the Man for others’. There are many ways in which He can be described, but that is certainly not inaccurate. He came not ‘’to be served, but to serve, and to give his life’’ (Mark 10:44). It is certainly true that Jesus gave His life for others in a unique and unrepeatable way. Nevertheless, He shows us that real life is found in serving and giving.

I read somewhere that the essence of life is found not in its duration but in its donation: it’s not how long you live, but how much you give.

Raised from obscurity to great power, Mordecai expended his unexpected privileges on those who desperately needed his help and support.

Mother Teresa said that although we may not be able to do great things, we can do small things with great love. May God help us to continually lose our lives, and so find them.

‘The epitaph on the life of a simple-hearted, true-hearted man, might be yours also. Why should you not from this moment adopt these twin characteristics? Go about the world seeking the good of people. It does not always mean that you should give them a tract or a little book. It is much easier to do this than to sacrifice your own good in order to seek theirs. You may be quite sure that some little act of self-sacrifice or thoughtfulness for a weary mother, or crying child, for a sick friend, or for some person who is always maligning and injuring you, would do a great deal in preparing an entrance for the Gospel message. It is thus that the genial spring loosens the earth and prepares the way for the germination of multitudinous life. Count the day lost in which you have not sought to promote the good of someone.’ F.B.Meyer: ‘Great verses through the Bible’, p.176.

PRAYER: Once more Lord, I ask you to help me to give and not to count the cost, to fight and not to heed the wound, to labour and not to ask for any reward save that of knowing that I do your will.