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What's Holding You Back?
Series: For Such a Time As This
I am so excited to be with you this weekend and our focus is going to center on calling and purpose. Sometimes in the day to day grind of life it can be difficult to think past what's for dinner and who's going where after school. My family's life is crazy. We have four kids six and under, we are in ministry (just launched a church) in April, and then on top of all of that in the last year or so I've sensed God's call on my life to begin a more focused career as an author and speaker. I wake up and say, ''today, what do I need to do?'' Live is overwhelming and that can often cause us to lose sight of the bigger picture. I know today I have to go to drive the kids to school and go to work and take out the trash but what do I really ''have to do?'' The deeper I have to. This is something I've been wrestling with for the last nine months. I'm currently writing another study called, ''I have to.'' There's a word in the Japanese language that so perfectly sums up what I'm trying to get at and its ''IKIGAI.'' It's defined as, ''a reason for being; the thing that gets you up in the morning.'' So this weekend, away from the hustle and bustle of life, I want to ask that question, ''what is the thing that gets you up in the morning?''
As I prayed about what it is that God would have me speak I was drawn to the story of Esther. So as we examine what it looks like to uncover our callings and purpose, her story is going to serve as our backdrop for this conversation.
For this session tonight we are going to be in chapter 1 of the book of Esther. We could read through that chapter together…I encourage you to do that. But what I'd love to do is just tell you this story. For thousands of years before we have the stories of the Scriptures recorded like we do in print they were told. They were passed down from one generation to the next through the art of oral storytelling. So I think there's something special about telling the story out loud. We are going to do this a lot over the course of our time together.
So this particular story begins with a king. This king's name is Xerxes. And he is a bid deal. He rules over the entirely of Persian Empire which stretches over 127 provinces. His pale os residence, the location of his royal throne, is in the city of Susa. Just to give you some modern context that is modern day Iraq. His official title is Shahahshah - which means Emperor or more specifically ''king of kings.'' Now that's important and we're going to come back to that in just a few minutes.
So in the third of his reign he decides he is going to through a banquet (code name for raging party). He invites everyone that's anyone. I.E (according to verse 3) the ministry leaders of Persia and Media, the princes, and the nobles of the provinces. So we're talking Hollywood ''A-lister'' event ...
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