A probing question for all of God's children to consider is, “Am I living a sacrificial life, or a self-serving life?

Is my life one in which, I only seek my own comfort, pleasure, and promotion? Or is my life one, in which I seek the good of others, but most of all, to glorify Christ

regardless of the consequences? Do I act because it is the right thing to do, or do I act because it is the profitable and comfortable thing to do?

Every child of God is eventually faced with such a decision in life. Esther, a little Jewish girl who, through God's providence, was made the queen of Persia, was confronted with the question — “Do I work to guard my new-found royalty and luxurious life by keeping silent about my own people, who were about to be destroyed by King Xerxes' evil assistant, Haman? Or do I choose what seems to be certain death - and for sure, relinquishing my royalty by approaching the king's inner sanctum and pleading the case for the Jews?

In 1 Kings 3, we find two women — worldly women, who live in the same dwelling.

Each gave birth to a baby at nearly the same time. During the night, one of the women rolled over in her sleep and smothered her baby to death. She took her dead baby’s body and placed it with the other woman, and took her baby.

When the two women consulted King Solomon about it, each claiming her own baby was the live baby, Solomon, who had just asked God for wisdom, called for a sword and advocated cutting the baby in half, giving each half to the two mothers

The woman who lost her baby in death had no protest, but the actual mother of the baby said, “O my lord, give her the living child, and in no wise slay it. But the other said, Let it be neither mind nor thine, but divide it.” I Kings 3:26-27. King Solomon instantly knew who the real mother was.

Sacrificial, self-denying love would not dare advocate that the baby be cut in half. The actual mother was willing to relinquish her guardianship of the baby to spare the baby’s life.

Esther had genuine love for her people, and doing the right thing — risking her royalty, and even her life took preeminence over guarding and preserving her own life of royalty.

Sacrificial -- or self-serving; Which describes your life?

— Paul Gauntt currently serves as the pastor of First Baptist Church of Palmer.