“Then Haman said, “Even Queen Esther let no one but me come with the king to the feast she prepared. And tomorrow also I am invited by her together with the king. Yet all this is worth nothing to me, so long as I see Mordecai the Jew sitting at the king’s gate.” – Esther 5:12

Ah, Haman. The villain in the story, the one we love to despise. The prideful trickster. If this were a Disney movie, when Haman entered the scene, the dastardly devilish music would ensue.

And yet.

I can’t help feeling sorry for this scoundrel. Haman craved significance above all things. And not just to be significant, but for everyone to know and see that he was significant. He felt quite puffed up that he alone was summoned to the party with the two royals. But that Mordecai had a real way of sticking in this guy’s craw. When Haman went out joyful and glad of heart and saw Mordecai and he didn’t rise or tremble before him again, he was filled with wrath {Esther 5:9}. Mordecai once again does not show Haman proper respect, and it makes Haman crazy. Because Haman’s ego is so fragile, it certainly doesn’t take much to send him reeling.

“His emotional strings were being pulled by his idol, which was public respect. When that idol was fed, he felt good; but when his idol was challenged, it led him to malice and anger…”

“His joy and his anger were simply the outward expressions of his heart’s idolatry.” {Esther and Ruth by Iain Duguid}

Haman really is a likeness to which we can compare ourselves. He had made an idol of something, and his whole emotional well-being was tied into this idol. There was always a void left at the center of things, especially when something upset his feeling of public respect {i.e. Mordecai}.

Yet again, I see myself in Haman. How quickly I fall into this trap of idolatry and searching for significance outside of my identity in Christ. Do you see yourself? What is the idol in your life that you find yourself clinging to desperately to give you significance?

Here are few big ones:

  • Is it physical appearance or weight?
  • A need to be approved of or “liked” on social media?
  • A need to have everything “put together”? To be seen as the one who has it all under control?
  • To be popular or included in social groups?
  • Or {fill in the blank}?

The good news, no the GREAT NEWS, is that the gospel has answered our need for significance, an ability to find our value outside of what others think about us. We have a God who loves us no matter what, and even in spite of our sin. And this is something I wish we could go back and tell Haman…that no matter how hard you try, buddy, you will never be satisfied chasing after significance outside of Christ. That, as Augustine said, “Thou hast made us for Thyself, and our heart is restless until it finds its rest in Thee.” But I’m not sure he would have listened.

We, on the other hand, have an opportunity to repent of our idolatry, and to turn our hearts back to Christ.

So, let me ask you? What is that thing in your life that your heart keeps turning to find significance? Has it satisfied you? Let’s talk in the comments!

All for Jesus,


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Joy Forney

Joy Forney

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