“The guests could drink as much as they liked—king’s orders!—with waiters at their elbows to refill the drinks. Meanwhile, Queen Vashti was throwing a separate party for women inside King Xerxes’ royal palace.
On the seventh day of the party, the king, high on the wine, ordered the seven eunuchs who were his servants to bring him Queen Vashti resplendent in her royal crown. He wanted to show off her beauty to the guests and officials. She was extremely good-looking.”
The king was furious and asked his court for advice. His advisors replied, “if the king agrees, let him pronounce a royal ruling and have it recorded in the laws of the Persians and Medes so that it cannot be revoked, that Vashti is permanently banned from King Xerxes’ presence. And then let the king give her royal position to a woman who knows her place. When the king’s ruling becomes public knowledge throughout the kingdom, extensive as it is, every woman, regardless of her social position, will show proper respect to her husband.”
Esther 1:8-11, 19-20 MSG
The book of Esther tell is of a queen that was dethroned. She was the most beautiful woman of her time and is know for her loss of the crown. Vashti’s story speaks more about power than of loss.
While the king was getting drunk, Vashti was influencing the women of her kingdom. How do I know? Because she continued to influence women with her actions.
Vashti was called by the king after he was done showing off his kingdom to his friends. The king wanted to show his queen off as a trophy, a piece of meat, an object.
When someone disobeyed the king, the person was put to death or imprisoned. Vashti appeared not to have a choice. She would lose her life, her palace, luxury, and crown. She’d lose it all. Or not.
Vashti had a choice. And she chose well. She may have lost her palace but she retained her self respect. She may have lost her physical crown but kept the crown of her dignity. She showed women that they are worth more than money, position or fame.
I do not condone disrespect to our husbands but this was not a healthy marriage. It was not a partnership, companionship or relationship. It was oppression and objectifying of women.
Vashti had a choice. She said no. No to oppression, no to abuse, no to being objectified. Yes to self-respect and self love. The Word doesn't describe Vashti’s future, but I know she continues to live on in us; women who take a stand and say no to abuse.
You have a choice. Speaking up and saying “no more” may have consequences. You may have losses but you will gain much more. Yourself.
Take your power back. Say no to abuse.