What is a Warrior Princess? She is a girl who stands up against darkness without losing her light. A woman who doesn’t care about her reputation but fiercely defends the unloved and weak. A daughter of the King who does not sacrifice her femineity for power.
Throughout history, many Warrior Princesses and Warrior Queens have arisen. One of the most noticeable is Esther. Esther was a young orphan raised by her older cousin but dearly loved by him. Xerxes, the Persian king who oppressed Ester’s people, the Israelites, had an issue with his wife. She defined him in front of his guests. That is something he could not have. He kicked her out of the palace and out of the kingdom, demoting her from riches to rags.
After time passed, Xerxes became lonely. His advisers told him he should look for a new wife; but not just any wife, the most beautiful one who could be found.
Throughout the kingdom, authorities captured and separated young girls from their families. These girls would have been very young, for most women in that day and age are married off by the age of fifteen. Even though these girls were beautiful enough to be selected, they were put through a year’s worth of beauty treatments to make them as picture-perfect as possible.
This is where Esther’s story begins. A young, beautiful girl is taken away from the only family she has ever known and is forced to make her body as beautiful as possible with no regard for her emotions or feelings. Reduced to an object, she would now compete against other girls for the king’s hand. This may sound pleasing. You get to be a queen, right? But at what cost? The king could call you into his chambers whenever he desired and you couldn’t say no. Conversely, you could not see him whenever you wanted. You had to be called like a pet. You were a trophy for the king to wear on his arm in public and only to be used when he felt like pleasuring himself. Even more frightening to think about is how old was king Xerxes when he cast out his wife and how old was Ester when pulled away from her simple life and placed in his arms?
This is not the picture-perfect painting we get in Sunday school. It is a dark Tale that could have ended in despair. But Esther braved it head-on. She did everything her instructors asked her to do and won the king’s favor. She became queen but still saw her cousin regularly and never forgot where she came from. She dealt with the deck of cards given to her with honor and grace.
Then the true test came. Her people and her cousin were targeted with ruin, starvation, and death. Ester was safe. Though forced into her throne, she was treasured and secure, and the secret of her heritage was held safe behind her painted ruby lips. She could have remained silent and saved herself. But she didn’t.
She spent three days in prayer and fasting. Arming herself with the Holy Spirit, she asked God to protect her but she vowed to do what needed to be done, even if it meant death. She rose and boldly entered the presence of the king. She confessed her heritage and exposed the enemy’s plan.
Instead of death, she was rewarded with affection and protection. Xerxes executed the man threatening her people. He wrote a new decree preparing her people for battle and silencing their foes. Because of her bravery, the Israelites survived.
Esther stood her ground when she could have hidden behind closed doors. She faced the government and it’s the highest authority to save the helpless. Esther was an earthly queen of a powerful nation, but more importantly, she was the daughter of the High King, God the Father.
How can we stand like Esther? How can we face death head-first when daily life seems overwhelming? We do what she did. Arm ourselves. She closed herself off from the world and cried out to God. Emptying herself of earthly pleasures; she filled herself with His power. She put herself last and God’s people first. She did not back down when the enemy dined beside her and laughed. She called out his wickedness in front of him and sentenced him to death. Though we can be sure there was fear in her heart in such circumstances. We know she didn’t let it hold her back. She stood her ground because she had prepared herself.
Let us arm ourselves with the Bible, God’s holy word. Let it nurture us and not only inform us but empower us. Don’t read it like a book, read it like a battle plan. It is a guide against the enemy and his schemes. He has changed little in the six thousand years he’s been tormenting humans. He seeks to steal, kill, and destroy. But we have a God who fights for us. We just need to know when to be still and when to stand in the gap.
Next on the list, we need to arm ourselves with prayer. To be in tune with God’s heart and mind. To listen to him in silence and understand what he wants us to do. He may not tell us immediately, but if we are persistent, he will show himself. For Esther, that was three days of seeking him.
Fasting is another weapon to be welded. It drains us of our worldly pleasures and fills us with His Spirit. We must be careful, for like David said in Second Samuel, we must be physically strong enough to fight when needed and not deprive ourselves of food. We can’t use this tool lightly, but it is a powerful weapon when used correctly.
Finally, we gather with like-minded friends. Like Esther, we surround ourselves with friends and peers while seeking Christ. She had her handmaids and eunuchs to pray with her. We have friends willing to stand in the gap for us. They may be quiet in person, but if their prayer life is strong, they are the soldiers you need by your side.
Let us take courage. The world grows dark and cold, yet we will shine with God’s light. The only way we have that power is by kneeling before Him, who is on the throne.
Daughters of the King, gird your swords, the battle awaits.