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Seasons of Responsibility

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One of the greatest expressions of maturity in any individual appears when they become capable of bearing responsibility for others.  Selfishness is the lowest form of maturity and requires little growth in anyone, but to bear the burden of another takes incredible fortitude. 

In the story of Esther, we see this reality as she demonstrates her willingness to take responsibility for others despite the personal cost.  When Mordecai speaks to her those infamous words “for such a time as this”, we all think that Mordecai was impressing on Esther that this was her moment and she needed to realize she was to be the answer.  However, Mordecai was not trying to evoke a sense of guilt that moved her to action but rather a sense of responsibility that revealed her desire to take action.  Esther 4:14 indicates that if Esther would have done nothing, Mordecai would have still believed someone would have stepped up. But Esther did step up and decided to bear responsibility for that which she could not ultimately control but could influence.

We see this principle in Nehemiah’s story.  When you read the book of Nehemiah, you will never find a time that someone came and gave Nehemiah an assignment or asked him to bear personal responsibility for his people….yet he did.  He put his own well being on the line because he saw a need and desired to do something about it. 

We mature when we are able to bear responsibility for those around us and use what places of influence we have been given to steward that responsibility well.  Real transformation in our culture will not come from those who seem like they should be setting policies but from those who are quietly and faithfully serving, observing, and taking responsibility to help others.

When we are responsible, we find our hearts are more in tune with hearing God’s voice.  If we live as demi-gods unto ourselves, how will we know if we are actually doing something God is pleased with or not?  Just because it is a good deed does not make it a God idea.  Remember- God with you does not mean God approves of what you are doing.  You have to learn to step into HIS HEART and check YOUR MOTIVES.

We also grow closer to the people we are serving.  That is why it is vital you do not only serve people like yourself.  For Nehemiah and Esther, they both had positions that could have separated them from those they were trying to help.  They never let titles get in the way of their desire to be among the people and steward their influence well.  Most people use position to separate themselves from the crowd, not to get among the people and lead them forward.  Titles and positions were never meant for glorifying anyone but given solely as an indication of the sacrifice and accountability that is required to steward influence and lead others well.