Father Figures in the Extended Family

Esther 2:7,16-17 & 20 NLT 
This man had a very beautiful and lovely young cousin, Hadassah, who was also called Esther. When her father and mother died, Mordecai adopted her into his family and raised her as his own daughter… 16 Esther was taken to King Xerxes at the royal palace in early winter of the seventh year of his reign. 17 And the king loved Esther more than any of the other young women. He was so delighted with her that he set the royal crown on her head and declared her queen instead of Vashti…20 Esther continued to keep her family background and nationality a secret. She was still following Mordecai’s directions, just as she did when she lived in his home.

Mordecai took his orphaned cousin into his home and raised her as part of his immediate family. Despite the fact that she was not his biological daughter, Mordecai invested so much into Esther that he advised her well into adulthood, helping her to fulfill her potential and become the queen. Even after she was queen, Esther respected the wisdom and advice of this godly relative who served as a father figure after her parents died. Does this sound like a poor, victim girl that was coddled and spoiled because she had been orphaned?

Scripture speaks of blessing “the fatherless” - how might we learn and apply this principle from Mordecai’s example with extended family?

How might we learn and apply wisdom from Esther’s example of respect for Mordecai even after she became an adult (and his queen)?

What would have become of Esther without a cousin who filled the crucial father figure role in her life?

How can a godly relative from the extended family be used of God to shape a child’s life and destiny?