There was a particular young girl in the bible, who displayed excellence of character and emotional maturity. She was a young girl who became a queen in a strange land. Her journey in life was not a smooth one, but when we take a closer look, we would see the traits that paved way for her becoming what she eventually became.

Here are twelve lessons from her life:

  1. A DISADVANTAGED GIRL: Esther grew up in very disadvantaged circumstances. In spite of this, she became an excellent woman.
    5 Now there was at the citadel in Susa a Jew whose name was Mordecai, the son of Jair, 
    the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, a Benjamite, 6 who had been taken into exile from Jerusalem with the captives who had been exiled with
    Jeconiah king of Judah, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had exiled. 7 He was bringing up Hadassah that is Esther, his uncle's daughter, for she had no father or mother.
    Now the young lady was beautiful of form and face, and when her father
    and her mother died, Mordecai took her as his own daughter.
    Esther 2:5-7 (NASU),
    Esther had every reason to be bitter about life. She lost her father and mother at a tender age; she was also carried into exile as a result of war. What of you? Have you had some sour times in life? How have you fared? Are you resentful, bitter and touchy or are you approachable and pleasant? Esther did not allow resentment to get the better of her. She grew up to be a lady that people loved wherever she went, and we know that before anyone can love you, you must have shown yourself friendly. She was a girl with a pleasant personality.
    Esther did not make known her people or her kindred, for Mordecai had instructed her that she should not make them known…. 
    Est. 2:10 (NASU)
    Many young people who grow up with foster parents grow up embittered; they have the tendency to feel that they are being maltreated. When corrected, some say in their hearts that it's because I'm not their biological daughter and so on. So, they do not release themselves to be nurtured by their foster parents. Esther grew up with a guardian; she too could have said that Mordecai was not her father and that his instructions were cumbersome. But no! We do not read that she complained, not even once! If you are living with people that are not your parents, what is your attitude towards them? Do you murmur and complain about every little thing without appreciating their efforts over you? Do you give your parents negative reports about your guardian? If you do, you are sowing a seed whose fruits will be bitter in future. It is better for you to repent of such deeds now and ask the Lord to forgive you, and then change your attitude to that of gratitude for their labours. The key to changing bad experiences to memorable ones is when you see that God is using your guardians to prepare you for a glorious future. This was the attitude of Esther and it paid off.
  5. SHE WAS BEAUTIFUL, YET NOT PROMISCOUS: 2 Then the king's attendants, who served him, said, "Let beautiful young virgins be sought for the king. 8 So it came about when the command and decree of the king were heard and many young ladies were gathered to the citadel of Susa into the custody of Hegai, that Esther was taken to the king's palace into the custody of Hegai, who was in charge of the women. Esther 2 (NASU) Many beautiful girls have a lot of suitors; so many of them use their beauty as a tool to have their ways. Esther was a very pretty girl. She had every reason to say I am an orphan; I have no dignity to protect. The only thing I have is beauty, so I should use it to gain attention. But she did not do so. She kept herself pure from defilement. When the time came for a queen to be selected, the first criteria was virginity and she qualified. Had she defiled herself before then, we would not have made her a case study today.
  7. A GODLY GIRL: In the Jewish culture, fasting is associated with seeking the face of God. This is something Esther must have learnt from Mordecai. When disaster loomed, Esther knew she needed help and because she has kept the knowledge of God in her heart, the first thing that came to her heart was to seek divine intervention by fasting. 16 "Go, assemble all the Jews who are found in Susa, and fast for me; do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my maidens also will fast in the same way. And thus I will go in to the king, which is not according to the law; and if I perish, I perish." Esther 4:16 NASU It is difficult to be godly in this present age when young people only think of pleasing themselves, but you need to have a desire towards God and also do things that please him.
  9. A WISE GIRL: Esther knew what she wanted to request of the king is very crucial, and the king's mood is very essential to his delivering a favourable verdict. So, she decided to win the king's heart first. This made her to prepare a dinner and invite him over. To let the king know that it was a weighty matter, she did not tell him that day when he came to dinner. She repeated the treat the second day, and despite the king's promises to her, she did not talk until she was sure the king meant his word. And eventually when she was to make the request, she was very tactful in her choice of words and the way she approached the king.
  11. ABILITY TO MANAGE A HOUSEHOLD: This happened before she eventually became queen. This is like a test of her leadership character. Imagine if she could not control the seven girls and ends up shouting on them. She handled them well because we saw she had a relationship with them. This is why she could ask them to join her in fasting when she wanted to go and seek the king's favour.
     Hegai liked Esther, and she won his favor. He lost no time in beginning her beauty treatment of massage and special diet.
      He gave her the best place in the harem and assigned seven girls specially chosen from the royal palace to serve her. 		
    	Esther 2:9 TEV
    A girl who will be responsible must know how to handle household challenges which includes relating with people who come into the house without getting irritable. How do you treat your younger ones when your parents leave them in your care? Do you shout on them and demand enforced obedience? You should understand that Obedience is earned, not commanded or demanded. The way you handle the opportunities you are given now shows whether you will be a good manager of a home later in the future.
  13. NOT TALKATIVE: If Esther were talkative she would have forgotten herself in the process of chatting with people and inevitably made known her nationality.
    Esther did not make known her people or her kindred, for Mordecai had instructed her that she should not make them known.
    Esth. 2:10 (NASU)
    But she was obviously a girl who talked with discretion. As a young girl, you will always have the temptation to talk and talk, but you don't have to say everything that comes to your mind. You should exercise self-control over the things that you say. Talking too much has a way of sapping your energy and also in the process of trying to encourage people to listen to you, you will sometimes have to colour what you say with little bits of untruths here and there. This is why the Bible says it is easy to sin when a person talks too much. (Pro 10:19)