When I saw the newest addition to the Moody Bible Studies for Women collection, I was so excited to see the topic! “Summoned: Answering a Call to the Impossible - An 8-Week Study of Esther” was written by Megan B. Brown, and is about the book of the Bible named after a young, secretly-Jewish queen... But let me also say, this book takes you on a journey deep behind-the-scenes of Esther’s story that is unlike any you’ve taken before.
Ms. Brown does not sugarcoat this well-known tale of King Ahasuerus’ search for a new wife, nor does she make it into a tale of romance or a guiding word of wisdom about how Esther’s actions in gaining the position of queen may be emulated. None of these were the purpose of this little book in the Bible, and for the first time I was made to consider what exactly the true purpose was.
What about you? Have you ever asked yourself why Esther is included in the canon of Scripture? Perhaps now is the time to do just that. And perhaps you will be as surprised by the answer as I was.
I really appreciated the depth and rawness of “Summoned”, and I am so glad I took the journey through its pages. Not everything felt totally relevant to me - for example, it was geared slightly more towards women with children and military families in particular - but the majority of it was both educational and challenging to my own life and role as a daughter of God. It featured thought-provoking study questions, helpful cross-references, and powerful applications that really help the Scriptures become understandable and relevant.
As with every single Moody Bible Study for Women that I have read, I highly recommend this new addition to the collection. I do feel that “Summoned” should come with a bit of a warning label - it is not for the faint of heart, because it does not hesitate to tackle troubling questions head-on. But if you are prepared for this, then the benefits of this study will unfold exponentially as you journey back in time to the palace of Xerxes. There, we watch and interact as God carefully orchestrates the life of a young girl named Esther into his overarching tale of love for his people.
I received this book courtesy of Moody Publishers in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.