Have you ever felt like you have given all of your time, and energy into a person, situation, or task only to feel as though you have not benefited at all? Have you ever worked so hard and had yet to see a payoff in your own life? Or maybe you have invested so much into others and have seen their lives change for the better while your left wondering why yours looks the same?
I can tell you that I have experienced all of the above. Sometimes it can really leave a bad taste in your mouth too. It’s not easy to give your all to something only to see that there is no real reward present. To be brutally honest most of us feel gipped or used when we have devoted so much time into being helpful or diligent without so much as a thank you from others.
The truth is we want to be rewarded for our hard work, we want to feel acknowledged for the blood, sweat, and tears that we have invested. It is normal and natural to feel this way. However, when it comes to God, he doesn’t always reward us on the spot. In fact most times he there will be an appointed time set for us to reap the benefits of all the time and labor we have put in.
This week I was reminded of Mordecai’s story in the bible. He has such a story! He was a Jewish captive in Persia who raised his cousin Esther just like his very own daughter. When King Ahasuerus (also known as King Xerxes I) was looking for a new wife Mordecai was there every step of the way as Esther competed amongst other women for her spot as queen. Mordecai worked as an attendant in the Kings court and would check to see how she was doing every day. He was all for Esther’s success, and guess what Esther became Queen! But Mordecai was still stuck working as an attendant. During his time working as an attendant it turns out the King’s right hand man Haman had an issue with Mordecai. This was all because Mordecai continuously refused to bow down to him as he passed by. Haman took it as a sign of disrespect and tricked the King into putting out a decree to kill all the Jews in the kingdom, not knowing the Queen herself was a Jew (that was one of those things Mordecai told her not to reveal.) So Mordecai lets Queen Esther know what is going on (via messenger) and they create a strategy for Esther to approach the King in regards to this matter. Now it turns out a few months prior Mordecai had overheard two of the king’s guards plotting to kill the king. He let Esther know and she told the King in Mordecai’s name (Esther 2:23) However nothing was done for Mordecai, other than it being noted in Kings book of memorable deeds. In the meantime, Haman has set the stage to have Mordecai killed publicly by hanging him, and was watiting for the opportunity.
Crazy right? How can so much go wrong for a man who has done so much good? Why didn’t he get rewarded for saving the King’s life? You would think after all he had done that something good would be coming his way. Right?
Turns out one night right before everything is getting ready to go down the King can’t sleep and orders for the book of memorable deeds to be given to him. He reads what Mordecai has done and asks “What honor or distinction has been given Mordecai for this?” His servants let him know that nothing was ever done for Mordecai. The King decides that something must be done!
Now there is a whole lot that happens in between like Haman being exposed publicly by Esther and killed by the Kings men! Want to know what else happens? Our boy Mordecai ends up being the second most powerful man in the kingdom outside of the king! At the right time, everything was revealed! The king knew he had saved his life, and he was told of Mordecai’s relation to Esther. Also the Jews didn’t end up being killed but in fact became exalted and no longer hung their heads down.
Look at God yall.
I typed all of this to say that God hasn’t forgotten about us either. It may feel like our backs are up against the wall. It may seem like complete mayhem is getting ready to go down, and there appears to be no way for the situation to end well. It may seem like we will never get the acknowledgement for the things we have done, but God does not forget! At the right place, in the right time everything will come together and our minds will be completely blown by God’s awesomeness.
But what do we do in the mean time? Here are 3 steps you can take to stay in the game.
1. Seek God- In Esther 4:16 we see Queen Esther declare a 3 day fast amongst all the Jews. They also sought God in prayer. This was to plead their case to God, seek his face, and wait for him to give them a strategy. Which he did!
2. Use God’s Plan- God gave Esther a strategy that not only saved the lives of her and her people but it also ended up changing the entire kingdom in the process. God knows how to get things done, and it is really in our best interest to execute the strategy that he gives us. It is the winning way!
3. Wait on God- Yeah, this one may not seem like much fun. Just always remember that what you are waiting on is going to be worth it. What’s the point in rushing something if it is done all wrong? Wait on God and allow him to lead you into victory!
I hope that you feel encouraged and ready for all the awesome that awaits you. Remember at the right place, and in the right time, God will give you the reward for all your hard work. He sees you, and he has not forgotten. Your time is coming, get ready!