By SOPHIE DRUFFNER
"And now, come to help me, an orphan. Put in my mouth persuasive words in the presence of the lion and turn his heart to hatred for our enemy, so that he and those who are in league with him may perish. Save us from the hand of our enemies; turn our mourning into gladness and our sorrows into wholeness."
The first time I ever heard of Queen Esther was when I watched a movie in Theology my eighth-grade year. In the movie, a beautiful Jewish girl wins the heart of the king and becomes his wife. But then, disaster strikes, as Haman, a noble close to the king’s ear, plots to kill all the Jews in the Persian Empire. When Esther learns of his plot, she plans to go to the King, an act that could mean death if the king does not grant her pardon. Before she goes, she dresses herself in all her finery and prays to God, hoping that he will hear the prayers of his faithful.
And he does.
Esther does all that she can, and God does the rest. I encountered that a few times in high school—when I do my best, God will do the rest. If one only prays and does nothing, then God cannot help that person—you must meet God half way, unless there is nothing left that a person can do.
But when one can do nothing else, prayer is the only answer. Coming into high school, I had never had any friends who cut themselves, were depressed, or made destructive decisions. At the beginning of high school, I discovered that these situations were all around me, and that sometimes, the only thing I could do was to pray. So I made a prayer list. I wrote down each person’s name I wished to pray for and I prayed that they would find Christ in their life, above all else. Once one finds Christ, everything else falls into place… God does the rest.
All of us has someone that they need to pray for on a daily basis. Even if there are no immediate results, God will answer your prayers, eventually. He will grant peace and healing to the people who need it the most, and he will reward your faithful prayers for your prayer list.
In the mean time, do all you can. Pray, but also do. Try to talk to those who might be making destructive decisions, or if you find that you cannot talk to them, talk to a trusted friend about it and seek advice. Talk to a priest in your parish, or a counselor. Maybe God has placed you in your loved one’s life so that you will be there to pray for them. Maybe you are the Body of Christ in your loved one’s life.
Pray, do all you can, and God will do the rest.