Quiet queen or quarrelsome quean?

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Esther was an amazing woman. Her story is in the book of Esther, found in the Old Testament. She had the ability to please those in authority. She was a foreigner in the land. She wisely asked advice and followed suggestions. She was chosen to be the wife of a king from among many young and beautiful girls. She underwent a year of preparation before she met the king.

Now this may give the idea that she was weak, wishy-washy and unable to think for herself

  • When she needed to show her strength, she prayed.
  • She fasted.
  • She acted.
  • She risked her life while planning to save a nation.
  • Her requests and petitions to her husband, the king, were clear, decisive and asked a lot of the king.
  • Esther persevered in exposing wrong doing until those she had put her life on the line for, were safe.

Vashti was a quarrelsome quean (which is an impudent or badly behaved woman)

Vashti, on the other hand, was a quarrelsome quean (which is an impudent or badly behaved woman) who chose to say no to a reasonable request made by her husband. The Bible says her conduct, if left unchecked, would become known to all women who would then despise, disrespect and bring discord in relationships with their husbands just as Vashti had. Vashti is like the woman in Proverbs 25:24 whose husband would have been better off living on the roof of the house than inside with a quarrelsome wife!

How easy it is to be a quarrelsome or contentious woman

When something comes her way she doesn’t like, she digs in her heels.
When mistreated, she unrelentingly attacks.
When wronged, she loudly and insistently justifies her behaviour .
An innocent discussion may escalate into an argument until she gets her own way.
Giving her sympathy evokes a litany of what is wrong in her life.
Such a woman quarrels about big things and nitpicks about small matters.

There are very few logical reasons to be around a quarrelsome woman.

How difficult it is to be a woman who has a gentle and quiet spirit (1 Peter 3:4)

Such a woman knows when to speak and when to remain silent.
She considers and prays before taking action.
She knows how to respond rightly in a thorny situation.
She quietly accepts authority, and masters the need for self protection.
She overcomes fear by asking God for help.
She makes bold moves to bring about justice and righteousness.
She chooses to be pure and shows respect to everyone.
Her actions bring peace and faith to others.
People are drawn to her inner beauty.

The question is . . . what kind of queen are you?

Check through your conversations, thoughts and actions in the last few days and weeks.
Are family, friends and co-workers drawn to your quiet and gentle ways?
Or do people avoid you because you tend to create conflict?

If, at times, you are a Vashti—embrace change and become an Esther. If you are an Esther, be encouraged. God sees your perseverance in pleasing Him, and gives you more grace.

Shann de Smidt

Shann lives with her husband on a smallholding outside of Pretoria. She teaches four and five year olds and is the principal of a school in Pretoria. She has written articles for newspapers and had school textbooks published but recent writing has been school newsletters! Spending time with children and grandchildren, growing cymbidiums, reading, studying and creating unique jewelry fill spare moments.

One Comment

  1. Laura Kirsten May 16, 2016 at 1:20 pm - Reply

    Esther is my absolute favourite Bible character. I can learn a lot from her…

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