Tuesday, August 4, 2015


Today’s Reading: Esther 1-2

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).


Located about 200 metres inside Jerusalem’s Jaffa Gate is Christ Church. It is the oldest Protestant Church in the Middle East. It was completed in 1849 and soon after became known as the “Jewish Protestant Church.” My son chose this photograph for today’s reading because of the “Star” in the sky.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.


Key Verses: Esther 2:7

And Mordecai had brought up Hadassah, that is, Esther, his uncle’s daughter, for she had neither father nor mother. The young woman was lovely and beautiful. When her father and mother died, Mordecai took her as his own daughter.


Esther’s name means “Star” in the Persian language. Ahasuerus is the Hebrew name for Xerses, King of Persia (modern day Iran). The historian Herodotus refers to the six month long banquet (of today’s reading) as the occasion of Xerxes’ planning for the expansion of his empire into Europe. Persia was defeated in a sea battle just off the coast of Greece (479 BC). Xerxes then headed home where he sought a new Queen. A few days ago we were reading from the book of Ezra. The story of Esther fits between chapters 7 & 8 of Ezra. Xerxes is called Artaxerxes in Ezra.

God chose an orphan girl, raised by her closest relative, Mordecai, to save His ancient people from a holocaust which would have otherwise destroyed the Jewish people. God had long-term plans for the Jews, which continue to this day. God also has plans to bless all of us too, as long as we, like Mordecai and Esther, co-operate with His plans by our own free will. Like Esther, we may not comprehend what God is doing at the present time, but as we are faithful, someday we will look back and we will see that God was at work.


Lord God, I pray that all the plans You have for me will be accomplished as I am faithful to read Your word and pray every day. You have said that You desire to give me “a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11-13). I believe You are at work in me and in the lives and circumstances around me. I ask these mercies in Jesus’ Name, Amen!!!


I’ve stood on the eastern shore of the Ionian Sea at Salamis, between Athens and Corinth, and imagined the defeat of Xerxes’ mighty naval armada by the smaller and faster Greek ships who set the Persian vessels on fire and forced them to retreat. Xerxes never had a chance to land his army on the shores of Europe. Several years later, the Greek emperor conquered Persia and a new Empire arose under Alexander the Great.

Norma-Jean, my wife of almost 57 years, won’t read this until it’s too late to keep me from telling this story, so here goes… People would often comment about her lovely dresses, and I wouldn’t tell where she purchased her changes of wardrobe. It was at the Hadassah (Esther’s Hebrew name) Bazzar. This Jewish women’s organization, named with Esther’s Hebrew name, would sell slightly used clothes at an annual event. Norma-Jean never wanted to miss the great deals at the annual sale. Years later, in the year 2000, our youngest grandson, Nathaniel Shaheen, was born in the “Hadassah” Hospital in Jerusalem (pictures below). The hospital is one of the projects supported by the Jewish women’s organization in Canada. Norma-Jean always looked great in those dresses as she would often sing on national TV. A Jerusalem hospital was helped a little bit by Norma-Jean’s purchases.

Yours for being like Mordecai and Esther (Hadassah), at the right place and at the right time, so that God’s will may be done “on earth as it is in Heaven,”



My grandson, Nathaniel Shaheen, born November 23, 2000.


Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem

Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem, where Nathaniel Shaheen was born.

15 thoughts on “Tuesday, August 4, 2015

  1. Thank you David …

    This is my latest ‘short thought’ which I’ve also shared
    on my ‘Witness Stand’ Facebook page


    From the first cries in Eden
    To these days of Distress,
    This Song we are singing,
    As the Bride starts to Dress.

    It was born of the Spirit
    in the Shepherd King’s heart.
    No end or beginning,
    so we all may take part.

    Whether Plainsong or Chant
    ( or works that are long
    by Wesley and Handel
    and sometimes Hillsong ! )

    Preferring Sankey or Gaither,
    we all must agree…
    at Eternity’s Concert,
    we’ll all bow the knee !

    Harmonious or not,
    there’s no words we would rather
    sing and Worship with Jesus
    to our God:
    ” Abba, Father ! ”

    ( Robin Aldrich, August 2015 )

  2. Amen to your prayer, today, David, and testimony about Norma-Jean. Praise God for this scripture about Esther. Women in the bible are so strong–amen, dear sisters-in-Christ! Blessings, fellow saints, as we praise God for the benefit we can be by spreading His Holy Word, today!

    For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. Jer 29:11-13 (NKJV)

    Give Thanks (run-on link)

  3. Holding our hands high in the air and praising You with thanks, dear Heavenly Father, for all our blessings, and the gift of knowing loving and worshiping YOU!!!


    “Nothing so pleases God in connection with our prayer as our praise, and nothing so blesses the man who prays as the praise which he offers. I got a great blessing once in China in this connection. I had received bad and sad news from home, and deep shadows had covered my soul. I prayed, but the darkness did not vanish. I summoned myself to endure, but the darkness only deepened. Just then I went to an inland station and saw on the wall of the mission home these words: “Try Thanksgiving.” I did, and in a moment every shadow was gone, not to return. Yes, the Psalmist was right, ‘It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord.'” —Rev. Henry W. Frost Streams in the Desert, Cowman, August 4th,

  4. Amen! Beverlee Kay.

    Thankyou for your encouraging reminder to praise God in everything &
    give thanks to Him for all our blessings. Jer 29: 11-13 (NKJV)

    Remembering you in prayer regarding your back, especially on Thursday.
    God is good, He will carry you through.

  5. Beautiful pic of the church not to mention the adorable baby Nathaniel and love the name.
    We don’t really know why the Queen disobeyed the King and wouldn’t appear in front of everybody at the King’s party? Can just imagine what a lot of women are thinking about the ‘wise men’s’ decision to replace the Queen with a more subservient woman:)
    Just finished readying the book “To Kill a Mockingbird”. My husband and I must be the only two humans on earth who never read the book before or have never seen the movie. It is so well written and Christianlike that I couldn’t put it down easily. There’s a kerfluffle in the news these days about the story so I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. Now I know. It’s still a good read.
    Blessings fellow saints on this hot dry day in Alberta where I live. Praying for rain but God is at work on something else so will keep pestering him:)

  6. Dear David… how I thank God for you! You have so given yourself to the Master that He is making you an all-out blessing, everywhere. I deeply appreciate your fervent love of the Lord and His Word. So often, I wish you were back in charge of 100 Huntley Street, where we could be blessed by your deep love of the Lord, and of people.
    May our Father continue to bless you in overflowing abundance, as He continues to minister to people through you. You are precious!

  7. Amen David! It’s so warm and cozy to just rest in Him and LET Him guide us! Also to enjoy the excitement and anticipation, with Blessed Assurance, to see what Glorious things He does!

    Thank you Robyn for your lovely poem. I liked the part about “harmonious or NOT” because it is ALL pleasing to God!

    Well Lynda that makes me the LAST person on earth to not read the book. I’ve tried several times but haven’t gotten past the first few chapters. I’ll try again.

    Thank you Beverlee for that encouraging story! It gave me goosebumps when you saw that sign!

    Lord God we give You THANKS IN ALL THINGS and wait in joyful anticipation for Your AMAZING OUTCOME!! Glory Be to God the Father Son and Holy Spirit Amen!!!

  8. Praise God, for this blog and prayed your prayer, David. I heard a Rabbi on TV say that Mordecai was married to Esther. Has anyone heard that? I taught my lesson tonight on Ephesians 4: 1-15. The work of all these ministry gifts is to perfect the saints for the work of the ministry. Thank you for your prayers saints as I had clarity of speech and was able to express myself adequately. Thank you Lord and thank you David for all your teaching over the years.

  9. God Bless you Ger and all those who stand up and speak in public! In Ephesians 4:11 it mentions that some people are called to be apostles and others evangelists. Do you know what the difference between these two is? Any tidbit of clarity would be welcomed and appreciated.

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