“I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo.
“So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring
Despite the gigantic fear harbored in his hobbit sized body, Frodo pressed on in the quest to destroy Sauron’s ring. His courage in the face of fear earned all hobbits the respect and homage of bigger and more powerful beings.
While none of us will find ourselves tasked with the mandate to save Middle Earth from Sauron’s evil plans, most of us can relate to Frodo’s angst. I’m sure Queen Esther would have. As the most highly favored Jewess in Susa, she was suddenly the only person standing in the way of an entire nation’s annihilation.
Esther faced the choice of hiding behind her anonymity (her ethnicity hadn’t been broadcast) or taking a bold chance to save her people. It wasn’t an easy decision, but a timely word from her mentor, Mordecai helped Esther to stand firm. At the risk of losing her own life, Esther went uninvited before the king and set in motion a series of events which are still celebrated by Jews today.
We all will face difficult moments at one point in our lives or another. And while we may be tempted to resent the difficulties or wish them away, the truth is that we are uniquely designed by God to deal with these situations. However, it is up to us to decide what we’ll do with what is in front of us – we can either back away in fear, or move forward in faith. In the face of circumstances which feel overwhelming, remember that even the tiniest steps of faith always result in God’s glory and our edification.