Christmas 2014 Devotion – Day 18

December 18th

Come to the king

I will go in to see the king.

ESTHER 4:16

Sometimes you see them huddling under the bridge on the west side. Two or three of them. Their hats pulled wind thin over their ears. They look like hungry prayers, their bare hands held out over flames licking off the sides of an old oil barrel. So much for chestnuts roasting on the open fire. This is about the open fire warming the tips of your numbed fingers, distracting you from the cold icing down the nape of your neck.

How does Advent come and kindle in the guy living out of a cardboard box behind the busy mall in mid- December?

In the woman slapped around in the flat over the bar serving up office Christmas parties?

In the pregnant runaway down at the bus station who’s watching everybody head home and doesn’t know where the next meal will come from, the next kind word, the next clean bed?

Mordecai was in sackcloth outside the palace gate. He sent word to his niece, chosen queen of the king, to never forget the plight of those collected on the other side of the gate: “Don’t think for a moment that because you’re in the palace you will escape when all other Jews are killed. If you keep quiet at a time like this, deliverance and relief for the Jews will arise from some other place, but you and your relatives will die.”

It comes like a whisper from those outside the gate: You’ve got to use the life you’ve been given to give others life.