On February 10 at 5:54 P.M. my wife gave birth to our daughter Hadassah. She is our very first daughter, and it is already a learning experience for me. Like Micaiah, we had a home birth for Hadassah. She was born under the same roof as Micaiah, and yet still managed to be different from him all the same.
Our previous child Micaiah seemed to arrive in what could only be described as a flash of lightning for us. Completely unexpected. He came out with a bang fully embracing the moment. Hadassah was quick once the time arrived, but the buildup was more recognizable and slow. Emily had been having contraction sine Friday night. By Saturday morning we knew that she was going to be here either that day or the next. The contractions were slow moving and sporadic, but it was clear that her time was coming. The whole thing was just telegraphed for us. We got the house ready because we knew that her arrival was imminent.
My wife was the one that found the name Hadassah. She loved the sound of it (as did I), and liked its connection in the Bible. Hadassah is the Hebrew name for Esther. The name itself means “myrtle tree” a tree whose flowers were often used for key ingredients in perfumes. It is more of the story of Hadassah that drew me to the name.
The Hadassah of the Bible is thrown into a giant story full of conspiracy and murder. She becomes the wife of a king. Her uncle Mordecai uncovers an awful conspiracy with plans to wipe out the Jews in the king’s country. This leads to Hadassah being confronted by Mordechai to utilize the position she has been placed in to bring about change and protection for her people.
Hadassah remains hesitant. Her husband has a bad temper streak and trying to speak out of turns leads people to death based on previous history. The result is a speech from Mordechai that contains what is arguably the most quoted phrase in the entire book of Esther. “Do not think to yourself that in the king’s palace you will escape any more than all the other Jews. For if you keep silent at this time. Relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” Hadassah is given a choice. She can either hide from what God is doing or embrace her role in it. There is only one clear option. Her embrace of God’s call to sue her leads to the safety of the Jews.
In preparation for Hadassah’s arrival I also finished my degree. I finished a multiyear long process in preparation for the next step of what God wants us to be doing. Some read the statement “for such a time as this” and think of there being one specific moment that God calls us into action. One specific event that he places us on this earth for. It is understandable why we might think that because that phrase was used to embolden Hadassah towards action in this one particular event, but we should not think of this as pertaining to one specific moment. It is a call to us in every moment of our lives. If we our sensitive to God’s leading, then wherever we are is where He has called us. Emily and I have been seeking God a great deal in where He is calling us next, but we also know that “for such a time as this” is not limited to one moment, but rather the present moment we are living. Preparing for that next phase can even be scary. The unknown can be terrifying, but Hadassah is a reminder to sue that the choice is an obvious one. Living in our role for God’s missions is the only option worth pursuing.
The choice is plain no matter what moment we are livening in. We are called to embrace our role in God’s missions. Hadassah is a reminder of that. A reminder that God is leading us into his next phase for our lives, but also a reminder that in every moment we play a role in His mission. 2017 was a particularly hard year for us surrounded with moments of anxiety and loss, but 2018? Well 2018 is proof the story isn’t over yet, and the time as always is now for whatever God is doing.
Our prayer for Hadassah is that she lives a life where she is not afraid to be heard when God calls her to speak (She already does a great job in making her voice heard). We pray that she will live each moment asking “why not? Why couldn’t God use me for a time like this?” It will be hard at times Haddie. The world will fill you with doubt. It will try and silence you when you are living for Him but remember that in each moment you have the choice to pursue His calling. May your life be a sweet fragrance pointing to His glory. May you live for such a time as this.