When King Ahasuerus of Persia was looking for a new queen, he asked that all the fair young women of the kingdom come to the palace. Mordecai, a Jew who served in the palace, brought his niece, Esther. She was beautiful, and “the king loved Esther above all the women” (Esth. 2:17). She became his new queen.
The king placed a man named Haman over all the princes in his kingdom and ordered all the servants to bow before Haman. Mordecai refused to bow. This angered Haman, and when he discovered that Mordecai was a Jew, he decided to destroy all of the Jews.
Haman told the king that there was a people in his land who would not obey the laws and who, therefore, should be destroyed. The king agreed and offered a reward to those who would kill the Jews.
Esther and Mordecai realized that to save their people, Esther would have to go before the king and plead for them. This was a dangerous thing to do, because no one was to go before the king without being called. Esther asked that her people fast and pray for three days for her.
The fasting and prayers of her people gave the queen the courage to do what she needed to do. When she told the king of the wickedness of Haman, the king had him destroyed instead of Esther and her people.
You, too, can pray to Father in Heaven for the strength to do those things that are good and great. He loves you and will listen to your prayers, just as He did to Queen Esther’s.
Color the flannel-board figures, then mount them on heavy paper. Cut them out and use them to retell the story of Esther.
Haman; Esther; Group of Jews praying; Mordecai; King Ahasuerus of Persia on his throne. (Illustrated by Beth Whittaker.)