Early coal mines did not have ventilation systems, so the miners would take a canary down with them. Canaries are very sensitive to methane and carbon monoxide which made them ideal for alerting the workers when there was a dangerous gas buildup. A dead canary meant a speedy evacuation. Many individuals throughout history have been compared to these little birds, for they had a willingness to experience life’s danger without compromise in order to let others know of unforeseen dangers. Esther was one of those canaries.
Esther became a queen when she married King Xerxes of Persia, but she kept her Jewish identity hidden. Haman, the second in command, attempts to destroy the Jews by manipulating the king to order a decree for their execution. Mordecai, a leader among the Jewish people lets Esther know of this plot and asks for her help. Her initial response is one of fear, for to come into the king’s presence without being requested could lead to an early exit from this world.
Mordecai let Esther know that she wasn’t safe just because she was in the king’s house, and that if she didn’t act now relief would come from somewhere else while her family perishes. Then he lets her know that maybe God put her in this position for this very moment! Esther asks all the Jews to fast for her for three days. In a dramatic twist, Haman is hanged on the gallows he had built for Mordecai’s execution; and the Jewish people are granted revenge against their enemies. The Feast of Purim is instituted to celebrate their deliverance.